• Modified-release hydrocortisone for circadian therapy: a proof-of-principle study in dexamethasone-suppressed normal volunteers.

      Newell-Price, John; Whiteman, M; Rostami-Hodjegan, A; Darzy, Ken H; Shalet, Stephen M; Tucker, G T; Ross, R J M; Academic Unit of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism, The University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK. j.newellprice@sheffield.ac.uk (2008-01)
      BACKGROUND: All existing long-term glucocorticoid replacement therapy is suboptimal as the normal nocturnal rise and waking morning peak of serum cortisol is not reproduced. AIM: To test whether it is possible to reproduce the normal overnight rise and morning peak in serum cortisol using an oral delayed and sustained release preparation of hydrocortisone (Cortisol(ds)). SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Six healthy normal male volunteers attended on two occasions, in a single-dose, open-label, nonrandomized study. Endogenous cortisol secretion was suppressed by administration of dexamethasone. Cortisol(ds) (formulation A or B) was administered at 2200 h on day 1. Blood samples for measurement of cortisol were taken from 2200 h every 30 min until 0700 h, then hourly until 2200 h on day 2. Fifteen body mass index (BMI)-matched control subjects had serum cortisol levels measured at 20-min intervals for 24 h. Serum cortisol profiles and pharmacokinetics after Cortisol(ds) were compared with those in controls. RESULTS: Formulations A and B were associated with delayed drug release (by 2 h and 4 h, respectively), with median peak cortisol concentrations at 4.5 h (0245 h) and 10 h (0800 h), respectively, thereby reproducing the normal early morning rise in serum cortisol. Total cortisol exposure was not different from controls. CONCLUSIONS: For the first time we have shown that it is possible to mimic the normal circadian rhythm of circulating cortisol with an oral modified-release formulation of hydrocortisone, providing the basis for development of physiological circadian replacement therapy in patients with adrenal insufficiency.
    • Simultaneous measurement of cortisol and cortisone in human saliva using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry: application in basal and stimulated conditions.

      Perogamvros, Ilias; Owen, Laura J; Newell-Price, John; Ray, David W; Trainer, Peter J; Keevil, Brian G; Department of Endocrinology, The Christie, Manchester, UK. ilias.perogamvros@nhs.net (2009-11-01)
      Immunoassays used for the measurement of salivary cortisol are limited by variable interference from cortisone. Salivary cortisone is a consequence of the salivary glands expressing 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 (11beta-HSD2) which converts cortisol to cortisone. We report a combined salivary cortisol and cortisone (SalF and SalE respectively) liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) assay to address the cortisone cross-reactivity in cortisol immunoassays and as a tool to study 11beta-HSD2 activity. The method was linear up to 400 nmol/L for SalF and 200 nmol/L for SalE and the lower limits of quantitation were 0.39 nmol/L (SalF) and 0.78 nmol/L (SalE). No evidence of ion suppression was found and precision, accuracy and recovery were within internationally accepted limits. No interference was identified from 13 structurally related steroids. SalF, SalE and SalF/SalE were significantly greater in the morning than at bed-time and following stimulation of the adrenal glands. As serum cortisol increased, an exponential rise was observed in SalF and a linear increase in SalE which reached a plateau at higher SalF concentrations. We have developed a novel, robust LC-MS/MS assay for the combined measurement of SalF and SalE. Our results confirm the 11beta-HSD2 activity of the salivary glands resulting in high SalE concentrations and the enzyme saturation at high substrate concentrations. This method can be used as a simple, non-invasive and highly specific tool to assess the value of salivary cortisol as a surrogate for free serum cortisol and as a potential novel way to assess 11beta-HSD2 activity.