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Volume 39(1); February 2024
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Namgok Lecture 2023
Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Hypothalamic AMP-Activated Protein Kinase as a Whole-Body Energy Sensor and Regulator
Se Hee Min, Do Kyeong Song, Chan Hee Lee, Eun Roh, Min-Seon Kim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):1-11.   Published online February 14, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1922
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
5´-Adenosine monophosphate (AMP)-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a cellular energy sensor, is an essential enzyme that helps cells maintain stable energy levels during metabolic stress. The hypothalamus is pivotal in regulating energy balance within the body. Certain neurons in the hypothalamus are sensitive to fluctuations in food availability and energy stores, triggering adaptive responses to preserve systemic energy equilibrium. AMPK, expressed in these hypothalamic neurons, is instrumental in these regulatory processes. Hypothalamic AMPK activity is modulated by key metabolic hormones. Anorexigenic hormones, including leptin, insulin, and glucagon-like peptide 1, suppress hypothalamic AMPK activity, whereas the hunger hormone ghrelin activates it. These hormonal influences on hypothalamic AMPK activity are central to their roles in controlling food consumption and energy expenditure. Additionally, hypothalamic AMPK activity responds to variations in glucose concentrations. It becomes active during hypoglycemia but is deactivated when glucose is introduced directly into the hypothalamus. These shifts in AMPK activity within hypothalamic neurons are critical for maintaining glucose balance. Considering the vital function of hypothalamic AMPK in the regulation of overall energy and glucose balance, developing chemical agents that target the hypothalamus to modulate AMPK activity presents a promising therapeutic approach for metabolic conditions such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus.
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Review Articles
Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
The Road towards Triple Agonists: Glucagon-Like Peptide 1, Glucose-Dependent Insulinotropic Polypeptide and Glucagon Receptor - An Update
Agnieszka Jakubowska, Carel W. le Roux, Adie Viljoen
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):12-22.   Published online February 14, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1942
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
Obesity is the fifth leading risk factor for global deaths with numbers continuing to increase worldwide. In the last 20 years, the emergence of pharmacological treatments for obesity based on gastrointestinal hormones has transformed the therapeutic landscape. The successful development of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists, followed by the synergistic combined effect of glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP)/GLP-1 receptor agonists achieved remarkable weight loss and glycemic control in those with the diseases of obesity and type 2 diabetes. The multiple cardiometabolic benefits include improving glycemic control, lipid profiles, blood pressure, inflammation, and hepatic steatosis. The 2023 phase 2 double-blind, randomized controlled trial evaluating a GLP-1/GIP/glucagon receptor triagonist (retatrutide) in patients with the disease of obesity reported 24.2% weight loss at 48 weeks with 12 mg retatrutide. This review evaluates the current available evidence for GLP-1 receptor agonists, dual GLP-1/GIP receptor co-agonists with a focus on GLP-1/GIP/glucagon receptor triagonists and discusses the potential future benefits and research directions.
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Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Initial Combination Therapy in Type 2 Diabetes
Ji Yoon Kim, Nam Hoon Kim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):23-32.   Published online November 30, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2023.1816
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a progressive disease in which it is challenging to achieve long-term durable glycemic control. However, intensive glycemic control is crucial for preventing diabetes-related complications. Previous studies showed that monotherapy with a stepwise add-on approach was seldom effective for long-term durable glycemic control. Combination therapy, which refers to the use of two or more drugs to control hyperglycemia, has multiple benefits, including the ability to target a variety of pathophysiological processes underlying hyperglycemia. In clinical trials, initial combination therapy showed better glycemic control than monotherapy or a stepwise approach. Emerging evidence indicates that initial combination therapy is associated with preserved β-cell function and fewer complications in T2D. However, cost-effectiveness and adverse events with combination therapy are issues that should be considered. Therefore, initial combination therapy is an important option for patients with T2D that clinicians should consider with a view toward balancing benefits and potential harms. In this review, we summarize the literature addressing initial combination therapy in T2D, and we suggest optimal strategies based on clinical situations and patient characteristics.
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Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Glucagon: Physiological and Pharmacological Functions and Pathophysiological Significance in Type 2 Diabetes
Tadahiro Kitamura
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):33-39.   Published online February 22, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1911
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
Glucagon has many functions, including the promotion of hepatic glucose production, fatty acid oxidation, thermogenesis, energy consumption, lipolysis, and myocardial contraction, as well as the suppression of lipogenesis, appetite, and gastrointestinal motility. However, it remains unclear which of these functions are physiological and which are pharmacological. Research on glucagon has lagged behind research on insulin because cross-reactivity with glucagon-related peptides in plasma has hindered the development of an accurate measurement system for glucagon. We recently developed a new glucagon sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) that is more specific and more sensitive to glucagon than the currently used measurement systems. The new sandwich ELISA is expected to contribute to personalized medicine for diabetes through its use in clinical examinations, the diagnosis of the pathophysiological condition of individual diabetes patients, and the choice of a treatment strategy. Efforts are continuing to develop glucagon/glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor dual agonists to improve obesity and fatty liver by enhancing glucagon’s appetite-suppressing and lipolysis- and thermogenesis-promoting effects. Thus, glucagon is expected to be applied to new diagnostic and therapeutic strategies based on a more accurate understanding of its functions.
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Thyroid
Novel and Advanced Ultrasound Techniques for Thyroid Thermal Ablation
Wai-Kin Chan, Jui-Hung Sun, Miaw-Jene Liou, Chia-Jung Hsu, Yu-Ling Lu, Wei-Yu Chou, Yan-Rong Li, Feng-Hsuan Liu
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):40-46.   Published online February 13, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1917
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
Thyroid radiofrequency ablation and microwave ablation are widely adopted minimally invasive treatments for diverse thyroid conditions worldwide. Fundamental skills such as the trans-isthmic approach and the moving shot technique are crucial for performing thyroid ablation, and advanced techniques, including hydrodissection and vascular ablation, improve safety and efficacy and reduce complications. Given the learning curve associated with ultrasound-guided therapeutic procedures, operators need training and experience. While training models exist, limited attention has been given to ultrasound maneuvers in ablation needle manipulation. This article introduces two essential maneuvers, the zigzag moving technique and the alienate maneuver, while also reviewing the latest ultrasound techniques in thyroid ablation, contributing valuable insights into this evolving field.
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Thyroid
Active Surveillance for Low-Risk Thyroid Cancers: A Review of Current Practice Guidelines
Min Joo Kim, Jae Hoon Moon, Eun Kyung Lee, Young Shin Song, Kyong Yeun Jung, Ji Ye Lee, Ji-hoon Kim, Kyungsik Kim, Sue K. Park, Young Joo Park
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):47-60.   Published online February 15, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1937
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
The indolent nature and favorable outcomes associated with papillary thyroid microcarcinoma have prompted numerous prospective studies on active surveillance (AS) and its adoption as an alternative to immediate surgery in managing low-risk thyroid cancer. This article reviews the current status of AS, as outlined in various international practice guidelines. AS is typically recommended for tumors that measure 1 cm or less in diameter and do not exhibit aggressive subtypes on cytology, extrathyroidal extension, lymph node metastasis, or distant metastasis. To determine the most appropriate candidates for AS, factors such as tumor size, location, multiplicity, and ultrasound findings are considered, along with patient characteristics like medical condition, age, and family history. Moreover, shared decision-making, which includes patient-reported outcomes such as quality of life and cost-effectiveness, is essential. During AS, patients undergo regular ultrasound examinations to monitor for signs of disease progression, including tumor growth, extrathyroidal extension, or lymph node metastasis. In conclusion, while AS is a feasible and reliable approach for managing lowrisk thyroid cancer, it requires careful patient selection, effective communication for shared decision-making, standardized follow-up protocols, and a clear definition of disease progression.
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Thyroid
A Narrative Review of the 2023 Korean Thyroid Association Management Guideline for Patients with Thyroid Nodules
Eun Kyung Lee, Young Joo Park, Chan Kwon Jung, Dong Gyu Na
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):61-72.   Published online February 14, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1938
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
The 2023 Korean Thyroid Association (KTA) Management Guideline for Patients with Thyroid Nodules constitute an update of the 2016 KTA guideline for thyroid nodules and cancers that focuses specifically on nodules. The 2023 guideline aim to offer updated guidance based on new evidence that reflects the changes in clinical practice since the 2016 KTA guideline. To update the 2023 guideline, a comprehensive literature search was conducted from January 2022 to May 2022. The literature search included studies, reviews, and other evidence involving human subjects that were published in English in MEDLINE (PubMed), Embase, and other relevant databases. Additional significant clinical trials and research studies published up to April 2023 were also reviewed. The limitations of the current evidence are discussed, and suggestions for areas in need of further research are identified. The purpose of this review is to provide a summary of the 2023 KTA guideline for the management of thyroid nodules released in May 2023 and to give a balanced insight with comparison of recent guidelines from other societies.
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Adrenal gland
A Contemporary Approach to the Diagnosis and Management of Adrenal Insufficiency
Suranut Charoensri, Richard J. Auchus
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):73-82.   Published online January 22, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.1894
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
Adrenal insufficiency (AI) can be classified into three distinct categories based on its underlying causes: primary adrenal disorders, secondary deficiencies in adrenocorticotropin, or hypothalamic suppression from external factors, most commonly glucocorticoid medications used for anti-inflammatory therapy. The hallmark clinical features of AI include fatigue, appetite loss, unintentional weight loss, low blood pressure, and hyponatremia. Individuals with primary AI additionally manifest skin hyperpigmentation, hyperkalemia, and salt craving. The diagnosis of AI is frequently delayed due to the non-specific symptoms and signs early in the disease course, which poses a significant challenge to its early detection prior to an adrenal crisis. Despite the widespread availability of lifesaving glucocorticoid medications for decades, notable challenges persist, particularly in the domains of timely diagnosis while simultaneously avoiding misdiagnosis, patient education for averting adrenal crises, and the determination of optimal replacement therapies. This article reviews recent advancements in the contemporary diagnostic strategy and approaches to optimal treatment for AI.
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Adrenal gland
The Fascinating Interplay between Growth Hormone, Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1, and Insulin
Eline C. Nijenhuis-Noort, Kirsten A. Berk, Sebastian J. C. M. M. Neggers, Aart J. van der Lely
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):83-89.   Published online January 9, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.101
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  • 1 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
This review intends to provide the reader with a practical overview of several (patho)physiological conditions in which knowledge of the interplay between growth hormone (GH), insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), and insulin is important. This might help treating physicians in making the right decisions on how to intervene and improve metabolism for the benefit of patients, and to understand why and how metabolism responds in their specific cases. We will specifically address the interplay between GH, IGF-1, and insulin in type 1 and 2 diabetes mellitus, liver cirrhosis, and acromegaly as examples in which this knowledge is truly necessary.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • IGF-1 and IGF-2 as Molecules Linked to Causes and Consequences of Obesity from Fetal Life to Adulthood: A Systematic Review
    Justyna Szydlowska-Gladysz, Adrianna Edyta Gorecka, Julia Stepien, Izabela Rysz, Iwona Ben-Skowronek
    International Journal of Molecular Sciences.2024; 25(7): 3966.     CrossRef
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Editorials
Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Younger-Onset Diabetes: Is the Age of Onset More Important than the Duration of Diabetes?
Mee Kyoung Kim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):90-91.   Published online February 22, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.102
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  • 28 Download
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Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
No More NAFLD: The Term Is Now MASLD
Ji Cheol Bae
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):92-94.   Published online February 13, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.103
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  • 50 Download
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Thyroid
It Is Time to Understand the Additional Benefits of Active Surveillance for Low-Risk Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma
Kyeong Jin Kim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):95-97.   Published online February 22, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2024.104
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  • 30 Download
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Original Articles
Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Inhibition of Sodium-Glucose Cotransporter-2 during Serum Deprivation Increases Hepatic Gluconeogenesis via the AMPK/AKT/FOXO Signaling Pathway
Jinmi Lee, Seok-Woo Hong, Min-Jeong Kim, Yu-Mi Lim, Sun Joon Moon, Hyemi Kwon, Se Eun Park, Eun-Jung Rhee, Won-Young Lee
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):98-108.   Published online January 3, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2023.1786
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary MaterialPubReader   ePub   
Background
Sodium-dependent glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) mediates glucose reabsorption in the renal proximal tubules, and SGLT2 inhibitors are used as therapeutic agents for treating type 2 diabetes mellitus. This study aimed to elucidate the effects and mechanisms of SGLT2 inhibition on hepatic glucose metabolism in both serum deprivation and serum supplementation states.
Methods
Huh7 cells were treated with the SGLT2 inhibitors empagliflozin and dapagliflozin to examine the effect of SGLT2 on hepatic glucose uptake. To examine the modulation of glucose metabolism by SGLT2 inhibition under serum deprivation and serum supplementation conditions, HepG2 cells were transfected with SGLT2 small interfering RNA (siRNA), cultured in serum-free Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium for 16 hours, and then cultured in media supplemented with or without 10% fetal bovine serum for 8 hours.
Results
SGLT2 inhibitors dose-dependently decreased hepatic glucose uptake. Serum deprivation increased the expression levels of the gluconeogenesis genes peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma co-activator 1 alpha (PGC-1α), glucose 6-phosphatase (G6pase), and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK), and their expression levels during serum deprivation were further increased in cells transfected with SGLT2 siRNA. SGLT2 inhibition by siRNA during serum deprivation induces nuclear localization of the transcription factor forkhead box class O 1 (FOXO1), decreases nuclear phosphorylated-AKT (p-AKT), and p-FOXO1 protein expression, and increases phosphorylated-adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (p-AMPK) protein expression. However, treatment with the AMPK inhibitor, compound C, reversed the reduction in the protein expression levels of nuclear p- AKT and p-FOXO1 and decreased the protein expression levels of p-AMPK and PEPCK in cells transfected with SGLT2 siRNA during serum deprivation.
Conclusion
These data show that SGLT2 mediates glucose uptake in hepatocytes and that SGLT2 inhibition during serum deprivation increases gluconeogenesis via the AMPK/AKT/FOXO1 signaling pathway.
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Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
Efficacy and Safety of Omarigliptin, a Novel Once-Weekly Dipeptidyl Peptidase-4 Inhibitor, in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
A.B.M. Kamrul-Hasan, Muhammad Shah Alam, Samir Kumar Talukder, Deep Dutta, Shahjada Selim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):109-126.   Published online January 23, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2023.1839
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary MaterialPubReader   ePub   
Background
No recent meta-analysis has holistically analyzed and summarized the efficacy and safety of omarigliptin in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). We conducted a meta-analysis to address this knowledge gap.
Methods
Electronic databases were searched to identify randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that included patients with T2DM who received omarigliptin in the intervention arm. The control arm consisted of either a placebo (passive control group [PCG]) or an active comparator (active control group [ACG]). The primary outcome assessed was changes in hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), while secondary outcomes included variations in glucose levels, achievement of glycemic targets, adverse events (AEs), and hypoglycemic events.
Results
From 332 initially screened articles, data from 16 RCTs involving 8,804 subjects were analyzed. Omarigliptin demonstrated superiority over placebo in reducing HbA1c levels (mean difference, –0.58%; 95% confidence interval, –0.75 to –0.40; P<0.00001; I2=91%). Additionally, omarigliptin outperformed placebo in lowering fasting plasma glucose, 2-hour postprandial glucose, and in the percentage of participants achieving HbA1c levels below 7.0% and 6.5%. The glycemic efficacy of omarigliptin was similar to that of the ACG across all measures. Although the omarigliptin group experienced a higher incidence of hypoglycemic events compared to the PCG, the overall AEs, serious AEs, hypoglycemia, and severe hypoglycemia were comparable between the omarigliptin and control groups (PCG and ACG).
Conclusion
Omarigliptin has a favorable glycemic efficacy and safety profile for managing T2DM.
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Diabetes, obesity and metabolism
FoxO6-Mediated TXNIP Induces Lipid Accumulation in the Liver through NLRP3 Inflammasome Activation
Mi Eun Kim, Jun Sik Lee, Tae Won Kim, Min Hi Park, Dae Hyun Kim
Endocrinol Metab. 2024;39(1):127-139.   Published online February 22, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2023.1826
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary MaterialPubReader   ePub   
Background
Hepatic steatosis, which involves the excessive accumulation of lipid droplets in hepatocytes, presents a significant global health concern due to its association with obesity and metabolic disorders. Inflammation plays a crucial role in the progression of hepatic steatosis; however, the precise molecular mechanisms responsible for this process remain unknown.
Methods
This study investigated the involvement of the nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-like receptor pyrin domain-containing-3 (NLRP3) inflammasome and the forkhead box O6 (FoxO6) transcription factor in the pathogenesis of hepatic steatosis. We monitored the NLRP3 inflammasome and lipogenesis in mice overexpressing the constitutively active (CA)-FoxO6 allele and FoxO6-null mice. In an in vitro study, we administered palmitate to liver cells overexpressing CA-FoxO6 and measured changes in lipid metabolism.
Results
We administered palmitate treatment to clarify the mechanisms through which FoxO6 activates cytokine interleukin (IL)-1β through the NLRP3 inflammasome. The initial experiments revealed that dephosphorylation led to palmitate-induced FoxO6 transcriptional activity. Further palmitate experiments showed increased expression of IL-1β and the hepatic NLRP3 inflammasome complex, including adaptor protein apoptotic speck protein containing a caspase recruitment domain (ASC) and pro-caspase-1. Furthermore, thioredoxin-interacting protein (TXNIP), a key regulator of cellular redox conditions upstream of the NLRP3 inflammasome, was induced by FoxO6 in the liver and HepG2 cells.
Conclusion
The findings of this study shed light on the molecular mechanisms underpinning the FoxO6-NLRP3 inflammasome axis in promoting inflammation and lipid accumulation in the liver.
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Endocrinol Metab : Endocrinology and Metabolism