Adult individuals with congenital, untreated, severe isolated growth hormone deficiency have satisfactory muscular function
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While growth hormone (GH) and the insulin-like growth factor type I (IGF-I) are known to exert synergistic actions on muscle anabolism, the consequences of prolonged GH deficiency (GHD) on muscle function have not been well defined. We have previously described a large cohort of subjects with isolated GHD (IGHD) caused by a mutation in the GH-releasing hormone receptor gene, with low serum levels of GH and IGF-I. The aim of this study was to assess muscular function in these IGHD subjects.
A total of 31 GH-naïve IGHD (16 males) and 40 control (20 males) subjects, matched by age and degree of daily physical activity, were enrolled. Fat free mass was measured by bioelectrical impedance; muscle strength by dynamometry of handgrip, trunk extension, and knee extension; myoelectric activity and muscle fatigue by fractal dimension; conduction velocity in vastus medialis, rectus femoris, and vastus lateralis muscles by surface electromyography.
The IGHD group showed higher knee extension strength both when corrected for weight and fat free mass, and higher handgrip and trunk extension strength corrected by fat free mass. They also exhibit higher conduction velocity of the muscles vastus medialis, rectus femoris, and vastus lateralis, but lower free fat mass and myoelectric activity of the vastus medialis, rectus femoris and vastus lateralis. There were no differences between the two groups in fractal dimension in all studied muscles.
Individuals with untreated IGHD have better muscle strength parameters adjusted for weight and fat free mass than controls. They also exhibit greater peripheral resistance to fatigue, demonstrating satisfactory muscle function.
KeyWordsGH; IGF-I GHRH receptor Dynamometry Muscle function
The authors thank the Associação do Crescimento Físico e Humano de Itabaianinha, for assistance.
This work was not supported by public or private funds.
Compliance with ethical standards
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
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