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      One-Year Growth Hormone Therapy Improves Granulocyte Function without Major Effects on Nutritional and Anthropometric Parameters in Malnourished Hemodialysis Patients

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          Background/Aims: Growth hormone (GH) resistance leads to enhanced protein catabolism and contributes to the malnutrition of patients with chronic renal failure (CRF). In short-term trials anabolic effects of rhGH therapy have been demonstrated in patients on chronic hemodialysis. Methods: This study was initiated to determine the effects of 12 months of rhGH therapy on polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMNL) function as well as on nutritional and anthropometric parameters. 0.125 IU/kg rhGH was given 3 times a week during the first 4 weeks and 0.25 IU/kg thereafter to 19 malnourished hemodialysis patients with a mean age of 59.3 ± 13.4 years. Results: Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) concentrations rose significantly from 169.2 ± 95.6 to 262.9 ± 144.4 ng/ml (p < 0.01) in the first 3 months, but declined thereafter. Phagocytic activity of PMNLs also increased significantly in response to rhGH therapy and this activation remained stable over the whole 12-month period. Other parameters of PMNL function were not influenced by rhGH therapy. In addition, nutritional parameters such as albumin, prealbumin, transferrin, cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, cholinesterase, predialytic creatinine and blood urea nitrogen were not affected by rhGH therapy. A decline of total body fat (TBF) was observed after 3 and 9 months of rhGH therapy (17.5 ± 10 vs. 16.7 ± 10% after 3 months, p < 0.017 and 16.8 ± 8.7% after 9 months, p < 0.049), whereas lean body mass remained stable. Conclusions: Twelve months of rhGH therapy caused a significant increase in IGF-I levels, stimulated phagocytic activity of PMNLs and induced a decline of TBF. Other anthropometric and nutritional parameters were not affected, which might be related to the persistence of GH resistance.

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          The urea reduction ratio and serum albumin concentration as predictors of mortality in patients undergoing hemodialysis.

          Among patients with end-stage renal disease who are treated with hemodialysis, solute clearance during dialysis and nutritional adequacy are determinants of mortality. We determined the effects of reductions in blood urea nitrogen concentrations during dialysis and changes in serum albumin concentrations, as an indicator of nutritional status, on mortality in a large group of patients treated with hemodialysis. We analyzed retrospectively the demographic characteristics, mortality rate, duration of hemodialysis, serum albumin concentration, and urea reduction ratio (defined as the percent reduction in blood urea nitrogen concentration during a single dialysis treatment) in 13,473 patients treated from October 1, 1990, through March 31, 1991. The risk of death was determined as a function of the urea reduction ratio and serum albumin concentration. As compared with patients with urea reduction ratios of 65 to 69 percent, patients with values below 60 percent had a higher risk of death during follow-up (odds ratio, 1.28 for urea reduction ratios of 55 to 59 percent and 1.39 for ratios below 55 percent). Fifty-five percent of the patients had urea reduction ratios below 60 percent. The duration of dialysis was not predictive of mortality. The serum albumin concentration was a more powerful (21 times greater) predictor of death than the urea reduction ratio, and 60 percent of the patients had serum albumin concentrations predictive of an increased risk of death (values below 4.0 g per deciliter). The odds ratio for death was 1.48 for serum albumin concentrations of 3.5 to 3.9 g per deciliter and 3.13 for concentrations of 3.0 to 3.4 g per deciliter. Diabetic patients had lower serum albumin concentrations and urea reduction ratios than nondiabetic patients. Low urea reduction ratios during dialysis are associated with increased odds ratios for death. These risks are worsened by inadequate nutrition.
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            Growth hormone, lymphocytes and macrophages.

             Keith Kelley (1989)
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              Differential effects of growth hormone therapy in malnourished hemodialysis patients.

              Malnutrition is common in chronic hemodialysis patients and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Several factors such as metabolic acidosis, hyperparathyroidism, and insulin as well as growth hormone (GH) resistance may lead to enhanced protein catabolism. Recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH) has been proposed as treatment of malnutrition because of its anabolic effects. In the present placebo-controlled, double blind study, the effects of three months of rhGH therapy on nutritional and anthropometric parameters, on bone metabolism and bone mineral density (BMD), as well as on polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMNL) function and quality of life (QoL) were evaluated in 19 malnourished hemodialysis patients (10 females and 9 males) with a mean age of 59.3 +/- 13.4 years. RhGH (0.125 IU/kg) was given three times a week during the first four weeks and 0.25 IU/kg thereafter three times a week after each dialysis session. Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) concentration rose significantly from 169.2 +/- 95.6 ng/mL to 262.9 +/- 144.4 ng/mL (p< 0.01) in the group receiving rhGH. Albumin, prealbumin, transferrin, cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, cholinesterase, predialytic creatinine, and blood urea nitrogen showed no significant changes during the three months in both groups. Total body fat (%TBF) was slightly reduced after three months (P = NS) in the patients receiving GH, whereas lean body mass (LBM) remained stable during therapy. Procollagen I carboxy terminal peptide (PICP), a marker of bone formation, increased significantly after three months from 250.1 +/- 112.6 to 478.5 +/- 235.2 microg/L (P < 0.01) in the GH-treated patients, whereas parameters of bone resorption like telopeptide ICTP showed only a slight increase (50.3 +/- 18.5 vs. 70.0 +/- 39.5 microg/L, P = NS). BMD at the lumbar spine decreased significantly after three months in the treatment group (0.8 +/- 0.17 vs. 0.77 +/- 0.16 g/cm2, P < 0.01), whereas BMD at the femoral neck remained stable in both groups. Phagocytic activity of PMNLs increased significantly after three months of therapy with rhGH, whereas other parameters of PMNL function were not affected by GH. QoL was slightly improved in the GH treated group, but decreased markedly in the placebo group. Three months of treatment with rhGH in malnourished patients on chronic hemodialysis causes a significant increase in IGF-I levels without significant changes in nutritional and anthropometric parameters. In contrast, bone turnover was enhanced with an initial decrease in BMD at the lumbar spine, and phagocytic activity of PMNLs was increased.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Clin Pract
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                February 2003
                17 November 2004
                : 93
                : 2
                : c75-c82
                aDivision of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine III, bDepartment of Medical Computer Sciences, and cDepartment of Pediatrics, University of Vienna, Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Experimental Endocrinology, Vienna, Austria
                68524 Nephron Clin Pract 2003;93:c75–c82
                © 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Figures: 3, Tables: 1, References: 44, Pages: 1
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