Spontaneous growth hormone (GH) pulsatility is the major determinant of GH release after thyrotrophin-releasing hormone in adolescent diabetics.
Edge JA., Human DH., Matthews DR., Dunger DB.
GH release is abnormally regulated in insulin-dependent diabetes (IDDM), and paradoxical stimulation of GH release after TRH has been reported. However, overnight GH pulsatility is increased in IDDM, and it may be difficult to distinguish TRH-stimulated release from spontaneous secretory episodes. To resolve this question, we carried out two overnight GH profiles followed by either TRH or saline control tests in six adolescents with IDDM; ages 11.4-14.7 years, duration IDDM 2.4-6.7 years. A rise in GH was seen in four of six following TRH, but with no consistent pattern. A rise was also seen in four of six following saline. Peak GH levels were similar after TRH and saline (19.3 +/- 4.4 vs 25.8 +/- 5.5 mU/l; mean +/- SEM). Mean blood glucose was no different during TRH and saline tests (9.5 +/- 1.6 vs 7.5 +/- 0.6 mmol/l). The two subjects who had an early GH peak after TRH were those in whom GH levels had already begun to rise, suggesting the coincident occurrence of a spontaneous GH pulse. The timing of the next GH pulse could be predicted equally well after TRH and saline from the overnight secretory profile using autocorrelation. Paradoxical GH stimulation after TRH is not seen in adolescents with IDDM, but apparent responses may be due to timing coincident with the increased spontaneous pulsatility.