Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging

Flavia Magri, Mattia Locatelli, Gianni Balza, Gianna Molla, Gianni Cuzzoni, Marisa Fioravanti, Sebastiano B. Solerte, Ettore Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We studied the circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin, growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and cortisol in 52 mentally healthy old subjects, 35 old demented patients, and 22 clinically healthy young controls. When compared to young controls, the circadian profile of plasma melatonin of old subjects, both demented or not, was clearly flattened, particularly during the night. The selective impairment of nocturnal melatonin secretion was significantly related to both the age and the severity of mental impairment (Mini Mental State Examination [MMSE] score). The PRL and GH circadian profiles were similar in the three groups during the day, but a significant lowering of the values recorded during the night occurred with aging. The impairment of the nocturnal secretion was related to the subjects' age and, for the GH secretory pattern only, also to the MMSE score. The ACTH circadian profile was similar in the three groups studied, even when old subjects exhibited higher ACTH levels throughout the 24h cycle, compared to young controls. Significantly higher cortisol values at evening- and nighttime occurred in elderly subjects and particularly in the demented group. Both the mean levels and the nadir values of plasma cortisol were positively related to age and negatively to MMSE score. In order to verify the sensitivity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis to the steroid feedback, the circadian profile of plasma cortisol was evaluated also after dexamethasone (DXM) administration (1 mg at 23:00h); the sensitivity of the HPA axis was significantly impaired in old subjects and particularly in the demented ones. These findings suggest that the neuroendocrine alterations already present in physiological aging, due to both anatomical damages and unbalanced central neurotransmitters, are enhanced in senile dementia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)385-396
Number of pages12
JournalChronobiology International
Volume14
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1997

Fingerprint

Circadian Rhythm
circadian rhythm
cortisol
Hydrocortisone
corticotropin
melatonin
Melatonin
Adrenocorticotropic Hormone
somatotropin
Growth Hormone
brain
Brain
prolactin
Prolactin
secretion
dementia
dexamethasone
neurotransmitters
Dexamethasone
steroids

Keywords

  • Brain aging
  • Dexamethasone suppression test
  • Hormonal circadian rhythms
  • Senile dementia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

Cite this

Magri, F., Locatelli, M., Balza, G., Molla, G., Cuzzoni, G., Fioravanti, M., ... Ferrari, E. (1997). Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging. Chronobiology International, 14(4), 385-396.

Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging. / Magri, Flavia; Locatelli, Mattia; Balza, Gianni; Molla, Gianna; Cuzzoni, Gianni; Fioravanti, Marisa; Solerte, Sebastiano B.; Ferrari, Ettore.

In: Chronobiology International, Vol. 14, No. 4, 1997, p. 385-396.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Magri, F, Locatelli, M, Balza, G, Molla, G, Cuzzoni, G, Fioravanti, M, Solerte, SB & Ferrari, E 1997, 'Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging', Chronobiology International, vol. 14, no. 4, pp. 385-396.
Magri F, Locatelli M, Balza G, Molla G, Cuzzoni G, Fioravanti M et al. Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging. Chronobiology International. 1997;14(4):385-396.
Magri, Flavia ; Locatelli, Mattia ; Balza, Gianni ; Molla, Gianna ; Cuzzoni, Gianni ; Fioravanti, Marisa ; Solerte, Sebastiano B. ; Ferrari, Ettore. / Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging. In: Chronobiology International. 1997 ; Vol. 14, No. 4. pp. 385-396.
@article{a92e7d2ac83349a28635656bbd883474,
title = "Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging",
abstract = "We studied the circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin, growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and cortisol in 52 mentally healthy old subjects, 35 old demented patients, and 22 clinically healthy young controls. When compared to young controls, the circadian profile of plasma melatonin of old subjects, both demented or not, was clearly flattened, particularly during the night. The selective impairment of nocturnal melatonin secretion was significantly related to both the age and the severity of mental impairment (Mini Mental State Examination [MMSE] score). The PRL and GH circadian profiles were similar in the three groups during the day, but a significant lowering of the values recorded during the night occurred with aging. The impairment of the nocturnal secretion was related to the subjects' age and, for the GH secretory pattern only, also to the MMSE score. The ACTH circadian profile was similar in the three groups studied, even when old subjects exhibited higher ACTH levels throughout the 24h cycle, compared to young controls. Significantly higher cortisol values at evening- and nighttime occurred in elderly subjects and particularly in the demented group. Both the mean levels and the nadir values of plasma cortisol were positively related to age and negatively to MMSE score. In order to verify the sensitivity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis to the steroid feedback, the circadian profile of plasma cortisol was evaluated also after dexamethasone (DXM) administration (1 mg at 23:00h); the sensitivity of the HPA axis was significantly impaired in old subjects and particularly in the demented ones. These findings suggest that the neuroendocrine alterations already present in physiological aging, due to both anatomical damages and unbalanced central neurotransmitters, are enhanced in senile dementia.",
keywords = "Brain aging, Dexamethasone suppression test, Hormonal circadian rhythms, Senile dementia",
author = "Flavia Magri and Mattia Locatelli and Gianni Balza and Gianna Molla and Gianni Cuzzoni and Marisa Fioravanti and Solerte, {Sebastiano B.} and Ettore Ferrari",
year = "1997",
language = "English",
volume = "14",
pages = "385--396",
journal = "Chronobiology International",
issn = "0742-0528",
publisher = "Informa Healthcare",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Changes in endocrine circadian rhythms as markers of physiological and pathological brain aging

AU - Magri, Flavia

AU - Locatelli, Mattia

AU - Balza, Gianni

AU - Molla, Gianna

AU - Cuzzoni, Gianni

AU - Fioravanti, Marisa

AU - Solerte, Sebastiano B.

AU - Ferrari, Ettore

PY - 1997

Y1 - 1997

N2 - We studied the circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin, growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and cortisol in 52 mentally healthy old subjects, 35 old demented patients, and 22 clinically healthy young controls. When compared to young controls, the circadian profile of plasma melatonin of old subjects, both demented or not, was clearly flattened, particularly during the night. The selective impairment of nocturnal melatonin secretion was significantly related to both the age and the severity of mental impairment (Mini Mental State Examination [MMSE] score). The PRL and GH circadian profiles were similar in the three groups during the day, but a significant lowering of the values recorded during the night occurred with aging. The impairment of the nocturnal secretion was related to the subjects' age and, for the GH secretory pattern only, also to the MMSE score. The ACTH circadian profile was similar in the three groups studied, even when old subjects exhibited higher ACTH levels throughout the 24h cycle, compared to young controls. Significantly higher cortisol values at evening- and nighttime occurred in elderly subjects and particularly in the demented group. Both the mean levels and the nadir values of plasma cortisol were positively related to age and negatively to MMSE score. In order to verify the sensitivity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis to the steroid feedback, the circadian profile of plasma cortisol was evaluated also after dexamethasone (DXM) administration (1 mg at 23:00h); the sensitivity of the HPA axis was significantly impaired in old subjects and particularly in the demented ones. These findings suggest that the neuroendocrine alterations already present in physiological aging, due to both anatomical damages and unbalanced central neurotransmitters, are enhanced in senile dementia.

AB - We studied the circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin, growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and cortisol in 52 mentally healthy old subjects, 35 old demented patients, and 22 clinically healthy young controls. When compared to young controls, the circadian profile of plasma melatonin of old subjects, both demented or not, was clearly flattened, particularly during the night. The selective impairment of nocturnal melatonin secretion was significantly related to both the age and the severity of mental impairment (Mini Mental State Examination [MMSE] score). The PRL and GH circadian profiles were similar in the three groups during the day, but a significant lowering of the values recorded during the night occurred with aging. The impairment of the nocturnal secretion was related to the subjects' age and, for the GH secretory pattern only, also to the MMSE score. The ACTH circadian profile was similar in the three groups studied, even when old subjects exhibited higher ACTH levels throughout the 24h cycle, compared to young controls. Significantly higher cortisol values at evening- and nighttime occurred in elderly subjects and particularly in the demented group. Both the mean levels and the nadir values of plasma cortisol were positively related to age and negatively to MMSE score. In order to verify the sensitivity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis to the steroid feedback, the circadian profile of plasma cortisol was evaluated also after dexamethasone (DXM) administration (1 mg at 23:00h); the sensitivity of the HPA axis was significantly impaired in old subjects and particularly in the demented ones. These findings suggest that the neuroendocrine alterations already present in physiological aging, due to both anatomical damages and unbalanced central neurotransmitters, are enhanced in senile dementia.

KW - Brain aging

KW - Dexamethasone suppression test

KW - Hormonal circadian rhythms

KW - Senile dementia

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0030842459&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0030842459&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

C2 - 9262874

AN - SCOPUS:0030842459

VL - 14

SP - 385

EP - 396

JO - Chronobiology International

JF - Chronobiology International

SN - 0742-0528

IS - 4

ER -