The effects of adrenocorticotrophic hormone and an equivalent dose of cortisol on the serum concentrations of lipids, lipoproteins, and apolipoproteins
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CitationMetab. Clin. Exp. 2006, 55(8):1083-7
AbstractPrevious studies have shown a strong lipid-lowering effect of adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) in healthy individuals and in patients with different kinds of dyslipoproteinemia. The mechanism behind this effect has not been established and its direct ACTH-specific nature has been questioned. Therefore, the present study was performed. Thirty healthy young males were randomized into 3 groups of equal size: one group received ACTH1-24 1 mg IM, daily for 4 days, another group was treated with cortisol 150 mg ID (50 mg tid) daily for 4 days, whereas a control group was observed for 4 days. Fasting blood samples were collected before and after treatment or observation. The serum concentrations of cholesterol (12%, P < .05), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (24%, P < .01), and apolipoprotein (apo) B (31%, P < .01) decreased significantly in the ACTH group but not in the cortisol and control groups. The statistical workup confirmed that only ACTH had a lowering effect on the apo B-containing lipoproteins. In contrast, the results indicated conformity between the treatment groups with respect to increases in the serum apo E concentrations. There were inconsistent changes in the serum concentrations of the triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, apo A, and lipoprotein(a). The main results were clear: the lowering effect of ACTH on the serum concentration of apo B-containing lipoproteins could not be ascribed to cortisol. These, in combination with previous in vitro results, indicated an ACTH-specific effect.
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