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

Metabolism of thyroxine-binding globulin in man. Abnormal rate of synthesis in inherited thyroxine-binding globulin deficiency and excess.

It has been previously suggested that inherited thyroxine-binding globulin ( TBG) abnormalities in man may be due to mutations at a single X-chromosome-linked locus controlling TBG synthesis. However, abnormalities in TBG degradation have not been excluded. The availability of purified human TBG and its successful labeling with radioiodide allowed us to examine such possibility. Human TBG was purified by affinity chromatography, labeled under sterile conditions with 131I or 125I,, and mixed with [125I]thyroxine (T4) or [131I]T4, respectively, before their intravenous injection. Blood and urine samples were collected over a 10-day period, and the turnover parameters were calculated. In eight normal volunteers mean values +/-SD for TBG and T4 respectively, were as follows: Half time (t1/2) 5.3 +/- 0.4 and 7.0 +/- 0.6 days; distribution space (DS) 7.2 +/- 1.0 and 10.8 +/- 1.2 liters; and total daily degradation (D) 0.211 +/- 0.053 and 0.088 +/- 0.011 mumol/day. In all subjects, t1/2 of TBG was shorter than that of T4; and the DS was smaller. 2.4 mol of TBG was degraded for each mole of T4. In five of six subjects from four families, comprising hemizygous and heterozygous carriers of TBG absence, decrease, and excess, the t1/2 and DS for TBG were within the normal range. The D of TBG was proportional to the serum concentration of the protein. Changes in the T4 kinetics in these patients were compatible with euthyroidism and with the known alterations in the extrathyroidal T4 pool associated with the changes in serum TBG concentration. A striking decrease in the t1/2 of TBG was found only in a patient with acquired diminution in TBG concentration and in patients with thyrotoxicosis or other conditions apparently unrelated to thyroid dysfunction. TBG t1/2 was 2.5 days in a patient with multiple myeloma and 3.6 days in two patients with thyrotoxicosis. Decreased TBG t1/2 was also observed in three of six patients with nonthyroidal pathology and was associated with an increase in TBG D disproportionate to their level of serum TBG. These studies indicate that changes in TBG concentration in patients with X-chromosome-linked TBG abnormalities are due to alterations in its rate of synthesis. In other conditions, abnormalities of TBG degradation and/or rate of synthesis may be found.[1]


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