Effect of oestrogen plus progestin on the incidence of diabetes in postmenopausal women: results from the Women's Health Initiative Hormone Trial.
ABSTRACT Studies examining the effect of postmenopausal hormone therapy on concentrations of glucose, insulin and diabetes incidence have been inconclusive, in part because many of the studies were too small. We examined the effect of oestrogen plus progestin on diabetes incidence and insulin resistance.
The study was a randomised, double-blind trial comparing the effect of daily 0.625 mg conjugated equine oestrogens plus 2.5 mg medroxyprogesterone acetate with that of placebo during 5.6 years of follow-up. The participants were 15,641 postmenopausal women enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative Hormone Trial. These women were aged 50 to 79 and all had an intact uterus. Diabetes incidence was ascertained by self-report of treatment with insulin or oral hypoglycaemic medication. Fasting glucose, insulin, and lipoproteins were measured in a random sample at baseline and at 1 and 3 years.
The cumulative incidence of treated diabetes was 3.5% in the hormone therapy group and 4.2% in the placebo group (hazard ratio 0.79, 95% CI 0.67-0.93, p=0.004). There was little change in the hazard ratio after adjustment for changes in BMI and waist circumference. During the first year of follow-up, changes in fasting glucose and insulin indicated a significant fall in insulin resistance in actively treated women compared to the control subjects (Year 1 to baseline between-group difference -0.22+/-0.10, p=0.03). INTERPRETATIONS/CONCLUSION: These data suggest that combined therapy with oestrogen and progestin reduces the incidence of diabetes, possibly mediated by a decrease in insulin resistance unrelated to body size. Future studies of alternative postmenopausal hormone therapy regimens and selective oestrogen agonists and/or antagonists should consider the effects of these regimens on insulin resistance and diabetes.
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ABSTRACT: The non-steroidal compound STX modulates the hypothalamic control of core body temperature and energy homeostasis. The aim of this work was to study the potential effects of STX on pancreatic β-cell function. 1-10 nM STX produced an increase in glucose-induced insulin secretion in isolated islets from male mice, whereas it had no effect in islets from female mice. This insulinotropic effect of STX was abolished by the anti-estrogen ICI 182,780. STX increased intracellular calcium entry in both whole islets and isolated β-cells, and closed the K(ATP) channel, suggesting a direct effect on β-cells. When intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test was performed, a single dose of 100 µg/kg body weight STX improved glucose sensitivity in males, yet it had a slight effect on females. In agreement with the effect on isolated islets, 100 µg/kg dose of STX enhanced the plasma insulin increase in response to a glucose load, while it did not in females. Long-term treatment (100 µg/kg, 6 days) of male mice with STX did not alter body weight, fasting glucose, glucose sensitivity or islet insulin content. Ovariectomized females were insensitive to STX (100 µg/kg), after either an acute administration or a 6-day treatment. This long-term treatment was also ineffective in a mouse model of mild diabetes. Therefore, STX appears to have a gender-specific effect on blood glucose homeostasis, which is only manifested after an acute administration. The insulinotropic effect of STX in pancreatic β-cells is mediated by the closure of the K(ATP) channel and the increase in intracellular calcium concentration. The in vivo improvement in glucose tolerance appears to be mostly due to the enhancement of insulin secretion from β-cells.PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(4):e34650. · 4.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The prevalence of diabetes is lower in premenopausal women, especially diabetic syndromes with insulin deficiency, suggesting that the female hormone 17beta-estradiol protects pancreatic beta-cell function. In classical rodent models of beta-cell failure, 17beta-estradiol at physiological concentrations protects pancreatic beta-cells against lipotoxicity, oxidative stress, and apoptosis. In this review, we integrate evidence showing that estrogens and their receptors have direct effects on islet biology. The estrogen receptor (ER)-alpha, ER beta, and the G-protein coupled ER are present in beta-cells and enhance islet survival. They also improve islet lipid homeostasis and insulin biosynthesis. We also discuss evidence that ERs modulate insulin sensitivity and energy homeostasis, which indirectly alter beta-cell biology in diabetic and obese conditions.Endocrinology 12/2009; 151(3):859-64. · 4.46 Impact Factor
Article: Estrogenic plant extracts reverse weight gain and fat accumulation without causing mammary gland or uterine proliferation.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Long-term estrogen deficiency increases the risk of obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women. Menopausal hormone therapy containing estrogens might prevent these conditions, but its prolonged use increases the risk of breast cancer, as wells as endometrial cancer if used without progestins. Animal studies indicate that beneficial effects of estrogens in adipose tissue and adverse effects on mammary gland and uterus are mediated by estrogen receptor alpha (ERα). One strategy to improve the safety of estrogens to prevent/treat obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome is to develop estrogens that act as agonists in adipose tissue, but not in mammary gland and uterus. We considered plant extracts, which have been the source of many pharmaceuticals, as a source of tissue selective estrogens. Extracts from two plants, Glycyrrhiza uralensis (RG) and Pueraria montana var. lobata (RP) bound to ERα, activated ERα responsive reporters, and reversed weight gain and fat accumulation comparable to estradiol in ovariectomized obese mice maintained on a high fat diet. Unlike estradiol, RG and RP did not induce proliferative effects on mammary gland and uterus. Gene expression profiling demonstrated that RG and RP induced estradiol-like regulation of genes in abdominal fat, but not in mammary gland and uterus. The compounds in extracts from RG and RP might constitute a new class of tissue selective estrogens to reverse weight gain, fat accumulation and metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women.PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(12):e28333. · 4.09 Impact Factor