The orderliness of the growth hormone (GH) release process and the mean mass of GH secreted per burst are highly conserved in individual men on successive days

Keith Friend, Ali Iranmanesh, Johannes D. Veldhuis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Scopus citations


Endocrine glands signal their remote target tissues via physiologically pulsatile release of regulatory molecules. A cardinal assumption of most pathophysiological experiments is that discrete attributes of pulsatile hormone secretion are stable over successive untreated observation intervals; i.e. repeated measurements show serial within-subject reproducibility. To test this hypothesis in the GH axis, we sampled blood every 10 min for 48 h in 14 healthy men (age range, 29-77 yr; body mass index, 21-51 kg/m2). The 2 consecutive 24-h serum profiles were subjected to ultrasensitive GH chemiluminescence assay (sensitivity, 0.002 μg/L) with a new dose-dependent variance model to estimate within-assay precision. We then applied deconvolution analysis to estimate the number, mass, amplitude, and duration of underlying GH secretory bursts as well as simultaneously calculate the apparent GH half-life and any concurrent basal hormone secretion Test-retest consistency was assessed by the Pearson correlation coefficient, and differences were determined by paired non-parametric (Wilcoxon) testing. Comparing successive 24-h profiles, no significant differences existed in any of the foregoing secretion or half-life measures or in a novel estimate of the relative disorderliness of hormone release, namely approximate entropy. Correlation was minimal for secretory burst amplitude and half-duration. In contrast, the calculated mean mass of GH secreted per burst was highly conserved across sessions within subjects, with an r value of 0.932 (P < 10- 6). This correlation equaled or exceeded that of mean and integrated serum GH concentrations on consecutive days (r = 0.920; P = 0.00003). The calculated daily GH production rate was also strongly reproduced (r = 0.784; P = 0.0009). Moreover, the within-subject GH half-life and GH secretory burst frequency estimates were well correlated on successive days (P = 0.034- 0.004; r = 0.568-0.711). Approximate entropy values were consistent at r = 0.837 (P = 0.0019). In addition, basal GH secretion rates correlated at r = 0.622 (P = 0.0176). We conclude that homeostatic control mechanisms within the GH-insulin-like growth factor I axis strongly preserve the day to day mean mass of GH secreted per burst and the serial orderliness of the GH release process in individual healthy men across a wide span of ages and body compositions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3746-3753
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The orderliness of the growth hormone (GH) release process and the mean mass of GH secreted per burst are highly conserved in individual men on successive days'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this