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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Dynamics and characterization of plasma immunoreactive beta-melanocyte stimulating hormone in hemodialysis patients: its relationship to ACTH.

We studied the plasma immunoreactive beta-MSH ("beta-MSH") in hemodialysis patients to determine its basal level, plasma disappearance rate, gel filtration and immunological characteristics. All patients had increased plasma "beta-MSH" (90--440 pg/ml; normal less than 90 pg/ml). Plasma ACTH and cortisol values were within the normal range. Cortisol infusion over 2 h induced almost no plasma "beta-MSH" variation as compared to controls where "beta-MSH" decreased rapidly (apparent half-life 90 min.); more prolonged administration of corticosteroids (dexamethasone 0.5 mg every 6 h for two days) caused a slight (20%) but significant (P less than 0.001) decrease of "beta-MSH." On Sephadex G-50 endogenous "beta-MSH" eluted in a molecular weight range of 6,000--10,000. In our radioimmunoassay dilution curves of endogenous "beta-MSH" paralleled that of synthetic human beta-MSH, but not that of purified human beta-LPH. In conclusion, hemodialysis patients show a clear dissociation between elevated "beta-MSH" and normal ACTH plasma levels. "beta-MSH" probably has a decreased plasma disappearance rate and seems related to a substance different from human beta-MSH.[1]


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