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Biology of Sex Differences

Sreenivasan Paruthiyil, Shin-Ichiro Hagiwara, Keshav Kundassery, Aditi Bhargava
BACKGROUND: Chronic stress is a major contributor in the development of metabolic syndrome and associated diseases, such as diabetes. High-fat diet (HFD) and sex are known modifiers of metabolic parameters. Peptide hormones corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) and urocortins (UCN) mediate stress responses via activation and feedback to the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. UCN3 is a marker of pancreatic β-cell differentiation, and UCN2 is known to ameliorate glucose levels in mice rendered diabetic with HFD...
November 6, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Andrea Iorga, Soban Umar, Gregoire Ruffenach, Laila Aryan, Jingyuan Li, Salil Sharma, Negar Motayagheni, Rangarajan D Nadadur, Jean C Bopassa, Mansoureh Eghbali
BACKGROUND: Recently, we showed that exogenous treatment with estrogen (E2) rescues pre-existing advanced heart failure (HF) in mice. Since most of the biological actions of E2 are mediated through the classical estrogen receptors alpha (ERα) and/or beta (ERβ), and both these receptors are present in the heart, we examined the role of ERα and ERβ in the rescue action of E2 against HF. METHODS: Severe HF was induced in male mice by transverse aortic constriction-induced pressure overload...
October 30, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Zeyneb Kurt, Rio Barrere-Cain, Jonnby LaGuardia, Margarete Mehrabian, Calvin Pan, Simon T Hui, Frode Norheim, Zhiqiang Zhou, Yehudit Hasin, Aldons J Lusis, Xia Yang
BACKGROUND: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) encompasses benign steatosis and more severe conditions such as non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), cirrhosis, and liver cancer. This chronic liver disease has a poorly understood etiology and demonstrates sexual dimorphisms. We aim to examine the molecular mechanisms underlying sexual dimorphisms in NAFLD pathogenesis through a comprehensive multi-omics study. We integrated genomics (DNA variations), transcriptomics of liver and adipose tissue, and phenotypic data of NAFLD derived from female mice of ~ 100 strains included in the hybrid mouse diversity panel (HMDP) and compared the NAFLD molecular pathways and gene networks between sexes...
October 22, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Benjamin Abelson, Daniel Sun, Lauren Que, Rebecca A Nebel, Dylan Baker, Patrick Popiel, Cindy L Amundsen, Toby Chai, Clare Close, Michael DiSanto, Matthew O Fraser, Stephanie J Kielb, George Kuchel, Elizabeth R Mueller, Mary H Palmer, Candace Parker-Autry, Alan J Wolfe, Margot S Damaser
Females and males differ significantly in gross anatomy and physiology of the lower urinary tract, and these differences are commonly discussed in the medical and scientific literature. However, less attention is dedicated to investigating the varied development, function, and biology between females and males on a cellular level. Recognizing that cell biology is not uniform, especially in the lower urinary tract of females and males, is crucial for providing context and relevance for diverse fields of biomedical investigation...
October 22, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Helena Bergström, Elsa Brånvall, Maria Helde-Frankling, Linda Björkhem-Bergman
BACKGROUND: Statins are often discontinued in patients with advanced cancer since the net effect of treatment is considered negative. However, guidelines concerning discontinuation of statin treatment are lacking. The aim of this study was to investigate any differences in time of discontinuation of statin treatment between men and women with advanced cancer disease. METHODS: Medical records from 195 deceased palliative cancer patients from a previous study cohort were reviewed...
October 20, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Wenling Tan, Adiilah K Soodeen-Lalloo, Yue Chu, Weijie Xu, Fengfang Chen, Jie Zhang, Wei Sha, Jin Huang, Guanghong Yang, Lianhua Qin, Jie Wang, Xiaochen Huang, Jingyun Shi, Yonghong Feng
BACKGROUND: Worldwide tuberculosis (TB) reports show a male bias in morbidity; however, the differences in pathogenesis between men and women with TB, as well as the mechanisms associated with such differences, are poorly investigated. We hypothesized that comparison of the degree of lung injury and clinical indices of well-matched men and women with newly diagnosed TB, and statistical analysis of the correlation between these indices and the extent of lung lesions, can provide insights into the mechanism of gender bias in TB...
October 10, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Kimia Sobhani, Diana K Nieves Castro, Qin Fu, Roberta A Gottlieb, Jennifer E Van Eyk, C Noel Bairey Merz
Since 1984, each year, more women than men die of ischemic heart disease (IHD) and heart failure (HF), yet more men are diagnosed. Because biomarker assessment is often the first diagnostic employed in such patients, understanding biomarker differences in men vs. women may improve female morbidity and mortality rates.Some key examples of cardiac biomarker utility based on sex include contemporary use of "unisex" troponin reference intervals under-diagnosing myocardial necrosis in women; greater use of hsCRP in the setting of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) could lead to better stratification in women; and greater use of BNP with sex-specific thresholds in ACS could also lead to more timely risk stratification in women...
September 17, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Abdulaziz Awali, Ali M Alsouhibani, Marie Hoeger Bement
BACKGROUND: Previous studies have shown that women experience greater temporal summation (TS) of pain than men using a repetitive thermal stimulus. These studies, however, did not individualize the thermal stimulus to each subject's thermal pain sensitivity. The aim of this study was to investigate sex differences in TS using an individualized protocol and potential mediators that have been shown to influence TS including physical activity and body composition. METHODS: Fifty young healthy men and women (21 men) participated in the study...
September 15, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Scott Fuller, Yongmei Yu, Tamra Mendoza, David M Ribnicky, William T Cefalu, Z Elizabeth Floyd
BACKGROUND: Insulin resistance underlies metabolic syndrome and is associated with excess adiposity and visceral fat accumulation, which is more frequently observed in males than females. However, in young females, the prevalence of metabolic syndrome is rising, mainly driven by accumulation of abdominal visceral fat. The degree to which sex-related differences could influence the development of insulin resistance remains unclear, and studies of potential therapeutic strategies to combat metabolic syndrome using rodent models have focused predominantly on males...
September 12, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Qingming Dong, Michael S Kuefner, Xiong Deng, Dave Bridges, Edwards A Park, Marshall B Elam, Rajendra Raghow
BACKGROUND: Patients with metabolic syndrome, who are characterized by co-existence of insulin resistance, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and obesity, are also prone to develop non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Although the prevalence and severity of NAFLD is significantly greater in men than women, the mechanisms by which gender modulates the pathogenesis of hepatic steatosis are poorly defined. The obese spontaneously hypertensive (SHROB) rats represent an attractive model of metabolic syndrome without overt type 2 diabetes...
September 10, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Cara Tannenbaum, Krystle van Hoof
BACKGROUND: To describe the effectiveness of online learning to augment academic capacity to consider sex and gender in the conduct of basic science, clinical research, and population health studies. METHOD: The analysis compares pre- and post-test scores from 1441 individuals who completed the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Institute of Gender and Health's interactive e-learning modules between February 2016 and May 2017. The tests measured knowledge, self-efficacy, and self-reported intent to change behavior for three competencies: (1) the ability to appropriately define and distinguish between sex-related versus gender-related variables, (2) the application of methods for integrating sex and gender, and (3) the critical appraisal of sex and gender integration in the design, methods, and analysis plan of research proposals and publications...
August 29, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Becky Meiners, Chetan Shenoy, Beshay N Zordoky
Anthracyclines are very effective chemotherapeutic agents that are widely used to treat pediatric and adult cancer patients. Unfortunately, the clinical utility of anthracyclines is limited by cardiotoxicity. There are several established risk factors for anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity (AIC), including total cumulative dose, very young and very old age, concomitant use of other cardiotoxic agents, and concurrent mediastinal radiation. However, the role of sex as a risk factor for AIC is not well defined...
August 29, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Yang Xin Zi Xu, Sudharsana Rao Ande, Suresh Mishra
BACKGROUND: Recently, we have developed a novel transgenic mouse model by overexpressing prohibitin (PHB) in adipocytes, which developed obesity due to upregulation of mitochondrial biogenesis in adipocytes, hence named "Mito-Ob." Interestingly, only male Mito-Ob mice developed obesity-related impaired glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity, whereas female Mito-Ob mice did not. The observed sex differences in metabolic dysregulation suggest a potential involvement of sex steroids...
August 29, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Adrian C Eddy, Gene L Bidwell, Eric M George
Preeclampsia is a pregnancy-induced hypertensive disorder resulting from abnormal placentation, which causes factors such as sFlt-1 to be released into the maternal circulation. Though anti-hypertensive drugs and magnesium sulfate can be given in an effort to moderate symptoms, the syndrome is not well controlled. A hallmark characteristic of preeclampsia, especially early-onset preeclampsia, is angiogenic imbalance resulting from an inappropriately upregulated sFlt-1 acting as a decoy receptor binding vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and placental growth factor (PlGF), reducing their bioavailability...
August 25, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Qing Qiao, Yan Hong, Wenjuan Zhao, Guanen Zhou, Qian Liu, Xianjia Ning, Jinghua Wang, Zhongping An
BACKGROUND: Sex differences in outcomes after small artery occlusion (SAO) stroke have not been well described, particularly in a Chinese population. We aimed to assess sex differences in outcomes and related risk factors among patients with SAO. METHODS: All consecutive patients with SAO were recruited between May 2005 and September 2014. Clinical features and risk factors were recorded. The mortality, recurrence, and dependency rates at 3 months after stroke were assessed...
August 2, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
C Silaidos, U Pilatus, R Grewal, S Matura, B Lienerth, J Pantel, G P Eckert
BACKGROUND: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia, and it affects more women than men. Mitochondrial dysfunction (MD) plays a key role in AD, and it is detectable at an early stage of the degenerative process in peripheral tissues, such as peripheral mononuclear blood cells (PBMCs). However, whether these changes are also reflected in cerebral energy metabolism and whether sex-specific differences in mitochondrial function occur are not clear. Therefore, we estimated the correlation between mitochondrial function in PBMCs and brain energy metabolites and examined sex-specific differences in healthy participants to elucidate these issues...
July 25, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Gabriel A B Marais, Jean-Michel Gaillard, Cristina Vieira, Ingrid Plotton, Damien Sanlaville, François Gueyffier, Jean-Francois Lemaitre
It is well known that women live longer than men. This gap is observed in most human populations and can even reach 10-15 years. In addition, most of the known super centenarians (i.e., humans who lived for > 110 years) are women. The differences in life expectancy between men and women are often attributed to cultural differences in common thinking. However, sex hormones seem to influence differences in the prevalence of diseases, in the magnitude of aging, and in the longevity between men and women...
July 17, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Meghan S Vermillion, Rebecca L Ursin, Denise I T Kuok, Landon G Vom Steeg, Nicholas Wohlgemuth, Olivia J Hall, Ashley L Fink, Eric Sasse, Andrew Nelson, Roland Ndeh, Sharon McGrath-Morrow, Wayne Mitzner, Michael C W Chan, Andrew Pekosz, Sabra L Klein
BACKGROUND: Amphiregulin (AREG) is an epidermal growth factor that is a significant mediator of tissue repair at mucosal sites, including in the lungs during influenza A virus (IAV) infection. Previous research illustrates that males of reproductive ages experience less severe disease and recover faster than females following infection with IAV. METHODS: Whether males and females differentially produce and utilize AREG for pulmonary repair after IAV infection was investigated using murine models on a C57BL/6 background and primary mouse and human epithelial cell culture systems...
July 17, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Apryl E Pooley, Rebecca C Benjamin, Susheela Sreedhar, Andrew L Eagle, Alfred J Robison, Michelle S Mazei-Robison, S Marc Breedlove, Cynthia L Jordan
BACKGROUND: Our previous study revealed that adult female rats respond differently to trauma than adult males, recapitulating sex differences in symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) exhibited by women and men. Here, we asked two questions: does the female phenotype depend on (1) social housing condition and/or (2) circulating gonadal hormones? METHODS: For the first study, the effects of single prolonged stress (SPS) were compared for females singly or pair-housed...
July 13, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
Apryl E Pooley, Rebecca C Benjamin, Susheela Sreedhar, Andrew L Eagle, Alfred J Robison, Michelle S Mazei-Robison, S Marc Breedlove, Cynthia L Jordan
BACKGROUND: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) affects men and women differently. Not only are women twice as likely as men to develop PTSD, they experience different symptoms and comorbidities associated with PTSD. Yet the dearth of preclinical research on females leaves a notable gap in understanding the underlying neuropathology of this sex difference. METHODS: Using two standard measures of PTSD-like responses in rats, the acoustic startle response (ASR) and dexamethasone suppression test (DST), we tested the effects of traumatic stress in adult male and female rats using two rodent models of PTSD, single prolonged stress and predator exposure...
July 5, 2018: Biology of Sex Differences
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