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      Clinical Utility of Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin Measurement

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          Abstract

          The high-affinity binding of the sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) for testosterone and to a lesser extent for estradiol influences the circulating levels of these sex steroid hormones, their biodisposal to target cells as well as their mutual balance. Although the regulation of SHBG is still not completely understood, in vitro studies performed with human hepatocarcinoma (Hep G2) cells have shown that estrogens and thyroxine stimulate SHBG secretion, by increasing the steady state of its mRNA concentrations. These observations are in good agreement with studies showing that SHBG levels increase during oral administration of estrogens as well as in patients with thyrotoxicosis. Interestingly, SHBG levels are normal in syndromes such as the abnormal transport of thyroid hormones and/or the syndrome of thyroid hormone resistance, which can be confused with thyrotoxicosis. By constrast, the effects of androgens are controversial. In many patients with hirsutism, SHBG concentrations are low and correlate negatively with both body mass index and fasting insulin levels. Because of the inhibitory effect of both insulin and insulinlike growth factor-1 on SHBG secretion by Hep G2 cells in vitro, it has been proposed that SHBG levels could be a marker of insulin resistance and/or hyperinsulinism in humans. Furthermore, an increased risk for either noninsulin-dependent diabetes and/or the overall mortality are associated with decreased SHBG levels in postmenopausal women. Finally, in men, SHBG levels are positively correlated with the concentration of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Therefore, the measurement of SHBG in clinical practice can be a useful diagnostic tool for: (1) correctly interpretating testosterone and estradiol serum concentrations; (2) investigating androgen-estrogen balance in gonadal and sexual dysfunctions; (3) assessing the peripheral effect of the hormones which regulate SHBG productions, and (4) evaluating insulin resistance and cardiovascular risk.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          HRE
          Horm Res Paediatr
          10.1159/issn.1663-2818
          Hormone Research in Paediatrics
          S. Karger AG
          978-3-8055-6290-4
          978-3-318-00047-4
          1663-2818
          1663-2826
          1996
          1996
          09 December 2008
          : 45
          : 3-5
          : 148-155
          Affiliations
          Hospices Civils de Lyon, Laboratoire de la Clinique Endocrinologique, Hôpital de l’Antiquaille, and INSERM U329, Hôpital Debrousse, Lyon, France
          Article
          184778 Horm Res 1996;45:148–155
          10.1159/000184778
          8964574
          © 1996 S. Karger AG, Basel

          Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

          Page count
          Pages: 8
          Categories
          Hormone Binding Proteins: Physiology and Clinical Implications

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