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Oral estrogen antagonizes the metabolic actions of growth hormone in growth hormone-deficient women


We have determined whether oral estrogen reduces the biological effects of growth hormone (GH) in GH-deficient (GHD) women compared with transdermal estrogen treatment. In two separate studies, eight GHD women randomly received either oral or transdermal estrogen for 8 wk before crossing over to the alternate route of administration. The first study assessed the effects of incremental doses of GH (0.5, 1.0, 2.0 IU/day for 1 wk each) on insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) levels during each estrogen treatment phase. The second study assessed the effects of GH (2 IU/day) on lipid oxidation and on protein metabolism using the whole body leucine turnover technique. Mean IGF-I level was significantly lower during oral estrogen treatment (P < 0.05) and rose dose dependently during GH administration by a lesser magnitude (P < 0.05) compared with transdermal treatment. Postprandial lipid oxidation was significantly lower with oral estrogen treatment, both before (P < 0.05) and during (P < 0.05) GH administration, compared with transdermal treatment. Protein synthesis was lower during oral estrogen both before and during GH administration (P < 0.05). Oral estrogen antagonizes several of the metabolic actions of GH. It may aggravate body composition abnormalities already present in GHD women and attenuate the beneficial effects of GH therapy. Estrogen replacement in GHD women should be administered by a nonoral route.

Type Journal
ISBN 0193-1849 (Print)
Authors Wolthers, T.;Hoffman, D. M.;Nugent, A. G.;Duncan, M. W.;Umpleby, M.;Ho, K. K. :
Published Date 2001-01-01
Published Volume 281
Published Issue 6
Published Pages E1191-6
Status Published in-print
URL link to publisher's version