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Journal Article

Coexisting Prolactinoma and Primary Aldosteronism: Is There a Pathophysiological Link?


Theodoropoulou,  Marily
Clinical Research, Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Max Planck Society;

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Williams, T. A., Dietz, A. S., Theodoropoulou, M., Riester, A., Fischer, E., Burrello, J., et al. (2015). Coexisting Prolactinoma and Primary Aldosteronism: Is There a Pathophysiological Link? JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ENDOCRINOLOGY & METABOLISM, 100(9), E1262-E1269. doi:10.1210/jc.2015-2422.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0029-BD8F-C
Context: Coexisting prolactinoma-primary aldosteronism (PA) is infrequently reported. Objective: The objective of the study was to identify patients with prolactinoma-PA and test the hypothesis that elevated prolactin (PRL) concentrations play a role in PA pathogenesis. Setting and Design: Hyperprolactinemia/prolactinoma was diagnosed in PA patients from two referral centers (Munich, Germany, and Turin, Italy) and in essential hypertensive (EH) patients from one center (Turin). PRL receptor (PRLR) gene expression was determined by microarrays on aldosterone-producing adenomas and normal adrenals and validated by real-time PCR. H295R adrenal cells were incubated with 100 nM PRL, and gene expression levels were determined by real-time PCR and aldosterone production was quantified. Results: Seven patients with prolacti noma-PA were identified: four of 584 and three of 442 patients from the Munich and Turin PA cohorts, respectively. A disproportionate number presented with macroprolactinomas (five of seven). There were five cases of hyperprolactinemia with no cases of macroprolactinoma of 14 790 patients in a general EH cohort. In a population of PA patients case-control matched 1:3 with EH patients there were two cases of hyperprolactinemia of 270 PA patients and no cases in the EH cohort (n = 810). PRLR gene expression was significantly upregulated in the aldosterone-producing adenomas compared with normal adrenals (1.7-fold and 1.5-fold by microarray and real-time PCR, respectively). In H295R cells, PRL treatment resulted in 1.3-fold increases in CYP11.82 expression and aldosterone production. Conclusion: Elevated PRL caused by systemic hyperprolactinemia may contribute to the development of PA in those cases in which the two entities coexist.