Gestational diabetes mellitus: diagnosis and outcome

Gestational diabetes mellitus: diagnosis and outcome.
Need for a revision of the Dutch perspective?
PhD ceremony: S.H. Koning, MSc
When: November 27, 2017
Start: 14:30
Promotors: prof. dr. B.H.R. (Bruce) Wolffenbuttel, P.P. van den Berg
Where: Academy building RUG, open to the public
Faculty: Medical Sciences / UMCG


Untreated gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is associated with an increased risk of complications for both mother and child. Many of these complications can be reduced by early diagnosis and treatment of GDM. However, worldwide there is a lack of agreement on the best way to diagnose and treat GDM.

In the Netherlands, the Dutch Society of Obstetrics and Gynaecology guideline “Diabetes and Pregnancy” for the screening and treatment of GDM was implemented in 2010. The diagnostic thresholds are based on the old WHO consensus originating from 1999 and have until now not been updated to the newest (more stringent) criteria, implemented in 2013. These new criteria have been adopted by many expert committees. However, evidence that applying the stricter criteria for GDM improves pregnancy outcomes is limited.

The research described in this thesis aimed to evaluate the current Dutch national guideline of GDM i.e. what is the outcome of GDM pregnancies using this guideline? And what are consequences when the current diagnostic criteria of GDM are to be revised?

In this thesis we have shown that the currently used national guideline for screening and treatment of GDM is successful in reducing the risk of short-term adverse outcomes, but not in reducing the likelihood of having a large-for-gestational-age neonate. We have also shown that the long-term care for GDM is far from optimal and requires further improvement. In order to further optimize GDM care and pregnancy outcomes we advise the use of more stringent blood glucose criteria for GDM diagnosis.


Epidemiology of metabolic health

snslagterEpidemiology of metabolic health
Lifestyle determinants and health-related quality of life
PhD ceremony: S.N. Slagter
When: January 11, 2017
Start: 12:45
Promotor: prof. dr. B.H.R. (Bruce) Wolffenbuttel
Where: Academy building RUG, open to the public.
Faculty: Medical Sciences / UMCG


Overweight and obesity often lead to the development of a disturbed glucose metabolism, increased blood pressure and a disturbed fat profile (too low values of the “good” HDL-cholesterol and high triglycerides values). This combination of metabolic complications is called the metabolic syndrome. It is associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Approximately one in four Europeans have the metabolic syndrome. Even though it is usually caused by obesity, a sub-group of obese people seem to be less susceptible to the metabolic health risks. They have an equally healthy metabolism as lean people. In the literature, this is referred to as metabolically healthy obese.

In ten large population studies from seven different European countries the occurrence of the metabolic syndrome and metabolically healthy obesity has been estimated. The metabolic syndrome is common in Europe and the Netherlands. However, in the Dutch LifeLines study still nearly 1 out of 4 obese women and 1 out of 10 obese men are metabolically healthy (depending on their age). From studies with LifeLines data only, it seems that smoking-, drinking-, eating- and exercise behaviours of these people is important. The level of tobacco use and drinking more than one alcoholic beverage per day was already related to the development of the metabolic syndrome. However, a ‘healthy’ dietary pattern and intensive vigorous physical activity increased in obese people the chance of metabolically healthy obesity. Actively changing lifestyle factors will reduce the number of people developing the metabolic syndrome, and consequently will reduce the incidence of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. However, even before these more serious chronic conditions occur, obese subjects (without metabolic complications) had an impaired quality of life. Therefore, in the treatment of obesity it is advisable to take into account aspects relating to the quality of life.


Lipids and apolipoproteins in cardiovascular disease

Lipids and apolipoproteins in cardiovascular disease
PhD ceremony: P.J.W.H. Kappelle, MSc
When: December 14, 2016
Start: 09:00
Where: Academy building RUG
Faculty: Medical Sciences / UMCG
Promotor: prof. dr. B.H.R. (Bruce) Wolffenbuttel


The first part of this thesis describes the role of cholesterol particles and associated proteins, and their role in the development of cardiovascular disease. There seems to be an advantage in determining the balance between good and bad cholesterol, as compared to the separate measures when attempting to predict the development of cardiovascular disease. Certain genes that have an influence on proteins transporting cholesterol from one particle to the other, do not seem to have an effect on the predictive value of these measures. The inhibition of this protein does increase the level of the good cholesterol, but this does not seem to result in any survival benefit.

The second part of this thesis describes the effect of cholesterol lowering agents on different cholesterol particles and associated proteins. Cholesterol lowering agents seem to affect the number of particles less than their cholesterol content. This could lead to a lack of intensive cholesterol treatment when only the cholesterol concentration is considered.

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Thyroid cancer treatment

Thyroid cancer treatment
Long-term effects and new developments
PhD ceremony: Ms E.N. (Esther) Klein Hesselink
When: October 12, 2016
Start: 16:15
Promotor: prof. dr. T.P. Links
Where: Academy building RUG
Faculty: Medical Sciences / UMCG

Thyroid cancer is increasingly common. This is especially the case for differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC), which has a favorable prognosis. Treatment consists of surgical removal of the thyroid gland, radioiodine treatment, and life-long administration of relatively high doses of thyroid hormone. This treatment is effective, but also rather aggressive since it can result in the occurrence of both short- and long-term adverse effects. There used to be little attention for this issue, as cancer-related outcome was less favorable. Nowadays, we see a lot of DTC patients with small tumors who have a near-normal life expectancy. For these patients long-term adverse effects of treatment are very important since they can negatively impact quality of life.

In this thesis we therefore studied the occurrence of long-term effects of DTC treatment. We found that atrial fibrillation (a cardiac rhythm disturbance) and mortality due to cardiovascular diseases are more common in DTC patients as compared to the general population. Furthermore, we found that a part of patients have salivary glands dysfunction following radioiodine treatment. Fortunately, the adverse effects of treatment on bone marrow function were limited.

Furthermore, there is a small group of thyroid cancer patients with more aggressive disease. For these patients, cure is often not achievable. Therefore, we studied the efficacy and toxicity of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (a new class of drugs) that have been studied in these patients. In addition, we studied the hereditary material of several thyroid cancers in an attempt to understand more of thyroid cancer pathogenesis.

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Subsidie DiabetesFonds voor bestuderen ‘endocrine disruptors’ en diabetes

Onderzoekers UMCG krijgen subsidie Diabetesfonds voor ontrafelen mechanismen diabetes

Onderzoekers van het UMCG ontvangen een subsidie van 275.000 euro van het Diabetesfonds. Met dit geld gaat Jana van Vliet-Ostaptchouk van de afdeling Endocrinologie onderzoek doen naar verstoringen van het endocriene systeem in het lichaam, die worden veroorzaakt door blootstelling aan bepaalde milieuverontreinigende stoffen. Haar onderzoek richt zich vooral op het zichtbaar maken van de onderliggende mechanismen van het ontstaan van diabetes.

diabetes photoDe huidige epidemie van type2-diabetes (T2D) vormt een belangrijk risico voor de moderne samenleving. Recente gegevens wijzen erop dat blootstelling aan bepaalde milieuverontreinigende stoffen, zogeheten endocriene disruptors (EDC), een belangrijke rol kan spelen in de wereldwijde toename van diabetes. Onderzoek laat zien dat EDC het endocriene systeem in het lichaam op diverse manieren verstoren.

Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk wil in haar onderzoek de relatie tussen EDC, verstoring van de glucosestofwisseling en verhoogd risico op type2-diabetes nagaan. Tevens wil zij nagaan of dit risico verandert door genetische aanleg en leefstijl. Zij vergelijkt de bloostellingen aan EDC’s en de interactie met erfelijke factoren en voedingsgewoonten en hoeveelheid lichaamsbeweging, tussen gezonde mensen, mensen met overgewicht en een groep van 1500 patiënten met type2-diabetes.

Voor haar onderzoek maakt Van Vliet gebruik van de gegevens van de LifeLines-biobank. Het onderzoek wordt uitgevoerd in samenwerking met Dr. A.M. Andersson van het Center of Endocrine Disruptors, Copenhagen University Hospital. Mede-aanvrager voor de subsidie is Prof. B. Wolffenbuttel van het UMCG. De studie gaat in totaal 4 jaar duren.

23 juni 2014

Photo by GDS Infographics

Bijniernet website steeds professioneler en completer

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