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Serum levels of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are increased and their soluble receptor (sRAGE) reduced in Hashimoto’s thyroiditis

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Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are increased in conditions of oxidative stress and promote inflammation by interacting with their receptor RAGE on cell membrane. By contrast, the soluble receptor sRAGE exerts protective effects by competing with RAGE for ligand binding. AGEs/sRAGEs interaction is involved in the pathogenesis of several diseases related to oxidative stress. In the present study, we evaluated the AGEs/sRAGEs oxidative balance in Hashimoto’ thyroiditis (HT).


We measured the levels of sRAGE, by ELISA, and AGEs, by spectrophotometric method, in the serum of 50 HT patients (5 M, 45 F; mean age 38.5 ± 12 years) and 50 age-, sex- and BMI-matched healthy controls. All subjects were euthyroid at recruitment and none was on LT-4 therapy.


Serum sRAGEs were significantly lower (median 424 vs 738 pg/ml; p = 0.001) and AGEs higher (205 vs 114 AU/g prot; p = 0.001) in HT patients compared to controls, and the two parameters were inversely correlated (p = 0.016). Accordingly, the AGEs/sRAGEs ratio was threefold higher in HT patients than controls (0.48 vs 0.15; p = 0.0001). In regression analysis models, serum TPO-Ab were the main predictors for AGEs and sRAGEs levels and AGEs/sRAGEs ratio (p < 0.0001), irrespective of TSH and/or FT4 values.


sRAGEs were decreased and AGEs increased, suggesting a dysregulation of AGE/sRAGEs-related oxidative homeostasis in HT patients, even when in euthyroid status. Autoimmunity per se seems to play an important role in AGEs/sRAGE imbalance, irrespective of thyroid function alterations.

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Correspondence to R. M. Ruggeri.

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Ruggeri, R.M., Barbalace, M.C., Cristani, M.T. et al. Serum levels of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are increased and their soluble receptor (sRAGE) reduced in Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. J Endocrinol Invest 43, 1337–1342 (2020).

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