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Milwaukee, WI, United States

Dalmar A.,Aurora Research Institute | Raff H.,Aurora St Lukes Medical Centeraurora Research Institute | Raff H.,Medical College of Wisconsin | Chauhan S.P.,University of Houston | And 3 more authors.
Endocrine | Year: 2014

The evidence for a link between vitamin D and preeclampsia is conflicting. There is a paucity of studies reporting simultaneous 25-hydroxyvitamin D (inactive form) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (biologically active form). We investigated if levels of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D, calcium-regulating hormones (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, parathyroid hormone), and calcium differ significantly between preeclamptics and controls. On postpartum day one, 98 subjects (44 with preeclampsia, 54 controls) were recruited among women admitted to the postdelivery unit, and their serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, parathyroid hormone, serum calcium, and serum albumin levels were prospectively measured. The majority of participants (70 %) had serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D level <20 ng/mL; 53 % had <15 ng/mL. Mean serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D level was similar between cases and controls (p = 0.50). Mean total serum calcium adjusted for albumin and magnesium was similar between cases and controls (p = 0.78). Mean serum 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D and parathyroid hormone levels were normal, and there were no differences between cases and controls. The only significant differences found between preeclamptic cases and controls were mean body mass index, parity, and season of blood draw. Vitamin D levels did not differ among preeclamptic cases and controls. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media New York. Source


Chintamaneni K.,Aurora Research Institute | Bruder E.D.,Aurora Research Institute | Raff H.,Aurora Research Institute | Raff H.,Medical College of Wisconsin
American Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology | Year: 2013

Apnea, the temporary cessation of respiratory airflow, is a common cause of intermittent hypoxia (IH) in premature infants. We hypothesized that IH elicits a stress response and alters glucose homeostasis in the neonatal rat. Rat pups were studied on postnatal day (PD) 2, 8, 10, 12, and 14. Pups were exposed to normoxia (control) or six cycles consisting of 30-s exposures to hypoxia (FIO2 = 3%) over a 60-min period. Blood samples were obtained at baseline, after the third cycle (~30 min), and after the sixth cycle (~60 min). Tissue samples were collected following the sixth cycle. Plasma ACTH, corticosterone, glucose, and insulin were analyzed at all ages. Hypothalamic, pituitary, and adrenal mRNA expression was evaluated by quantitative PCR in PD2, PD8, and PD12 pups. Exposure to IH elicited significant increases in plasma ACTH and corticosterone at all ages studied. The largest increase in corticosterone occurred in PD2 pups, despite only a very small increase in plasma ACTH. This ACTH-independent increase in corticosterone in PD2 pups was associated with increases in adrenal Ldlr and Star mRNA expression. Additionally, IH caused hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia at all ages. We conclude that IH elicits a significant pituitary-adrenal response and significantly alters glucose homeostasis. Furthermore, the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of these responses depend on developmental age. © 2013 the American Physiological Society. Source


Moffitt P.,Aurora Research Institute | Fikowski H.,Aurora College | Mauricio M.,Aurora College | Mackenzie A.,Aurora College
International Journal of Circumpolar Health | Year: 2013

Introduction. Family violence is a complex, multidimensional and pervasive presence in many Aboriginal communities. Although practitioners acknowledge that intimate partner violence (IPV) is a grave concern in the North, as in other jurisdictions in Canada, there is a paucity of literature about IPV and the local response to that violence. Objective. The purpose of this study is to report on a synthesis of Northern Territorial literature and a 3-year media watch conducted in the Canadian territories. Design. This review is part of a multidisciplinary 5-year study occurring in the Northwest Territories (NT) and northern regions of the Prairie Provinces of Canada. The methods included a review of the literature through CINAHL, PubMed, Academic Search Complete, Social Sciences Index and JSTOR (1990-2012) combined with a media watch from 2009 to 2012. A thematic content analysis was completed. Results. Themes included: colonization; alcohol and substance use; effects of residential schooling; housing inadequacies; help-seeking behaviours; and gaps within the justice system. Identified themes from the media watch were: murders from IPV; reported assaults and criminal charges; emergency protection orders; and awareness campaigns and prevention measures. Conclusion. When synthesized, the results of the literature review and media surveillance depict a starting context and description of IPV in the Canadian territories. There are many questions left unanswered which build support for the necessity of the current research, outline the public outcry for action in local media and identify the current published knowledge about IPV. © 2013 Pertice Moffitt et al. Source


Raff H.,Medical College of Wisconsin | Raff H.,Aurora Research Institute
Endocrinology and Metabolism Clinics of North America | Year: 2015

Endogenous hypercortisolism (Cushing syndrome) is one of the most enigmatic diseases in clinical medicine. The diagnosis and differential diagnosis of Cushing syndrome depend on proper laboratory evaluation. In this review, an update is provided on selected critical issues in the diagnosis and differential diagnosis of Cushing syndrome: the use of late-night salivary cortisol in initial diagnosis and for postoperative surveillance, and the use of prolactin measurement to improve the performance of inferior petrosal sinus sampling to distinguish Cushing disease from ectopic adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) syndrome during differential diagnosis of ACTH-dependent Cushing syndrome. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. Source


Raff H.,Medical College of Wisconsin | Raff H.,Aurora Research Institute | Carroll T.,Medical College of Wisconsin
Journal of Physiology | Year: 2015

The physiological control of cortisol synthesis in the adrenal cortex involves stimulation of adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) by hypothalamic corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) and then stimulation of the adrenal by ACTH. The control loop of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is closed by negative feedback of cortisol on the hypothalamus and pituitary. Understanding this system is required to master the diagnosis, differential diagnosis and treatment of endogenous hypercortisolism - Cushing's syndrome. Endogenous Cushing's syndrome is caused either by excess ACTH secretion or by autonomous cortisol release from the adrenal cortex. Diagnosis of cortisol excess exploits three physiological principles: failure to achieve the normal nadir in the cortisol diurnal rhythm, loss of sensitivity of ACTH-secreting tumours to cortisol negative feedback, and increased excretion of free cortisol in the urine. Differentiating a pituitary source of excess ACTH (Cushing's disease) from an ectopic source is accomplished by imaging the pituitary and sampling for ACTH in the venous drainage of the pituitary. With surgical removal of ACTH or cortisol-secreting tumours, secondary adrenal insufficiency ensues because of the prior suppression of the HPA axis by glucocorticoid negative feedback. Medical therapy is targeted to the anatomical location of the dysregulated component of the HPA axis. Future research will focus on new diagnostics and treatments of Cushing's syndrome. These are elegant examples of translational research: understanding basic physiology informs the development of new approaches to diagnosis and treatment. Appreciating pathophysiology generates new areas for inquiry of basic physiological and biochemical mechanisms. © 2014 The Physiological Society. Source

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