A retrospective survey was accomplished OD 420 consecutive patients who had undergone dexamethasone suppression tests between 1975-1988 due to suspected adrenal disorders. We found 7 patients in whom glucocorticoid resistance was apparent. They showed 4-6 abnormalities of the 7 investigations used: insensitivity to dexamethasone inhibition (n = 7). increased urinary cortisol (n = 3), glucocorticoid receptor (GR) thermolability (n = 4), decreased number of glucocorticoid receptors (n = 4), abnormal ligand affinity of GR (n = 4), abnormal basal GR mRNA expression (n = 4). and abnormal down-regulation of basal GR mRNA levels by dexamethasone (n = 1). The four patients with GR thermolability also showed increased basal GR mRNA levels. In the other patients the number of GR per cell was decreased without an up-regulation of GR mRNA. It is concluded that the syndromes of glucocorticoid resistance vary notably, clinically as well as biochemically; in patients evaluated for adrenocortical disorders the syndrome is apparently encountered in 1-2% of the patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical