Campesi, Ilaria (2010) L'Assunzione di associazioni estro-progestiniche seleziona due popolazioni femminili che differiscono in molti aspetti inclusi i processi di metilazione del DNA. Doctoral Thesis.
Until now there has been little recruitment of women in clinical trials and this fact led to extrapolate data obtained in male gender also for women. The finding that gender differences are more numerous than one might think, suggests the importance of recruitment of women in the intervention studies. Moreover, the hormonal fluctuations that characterize woman's life (menstruation, pregnancy, lactation, menopause) and the use of oral contraceptives (CO) select different subsets of women. In this context we try to identify differences across a range of biomarkers blood, often used to measure the effectiveness of certain classes of drugs, by gender (males and females) and after stratification of the female population according the assumption of OC. For the current importance of epigenetic in the etiology of various diseases we analyze the degree of methylation of DNA in whole blood samples. We, also analyzed the behavior of macrophages (both in basal conditions and after stimulation with LPS), for their involvement in inflammatory processes in atherosclerosis in order to assess whether the administration of CO could affect their functionality. Our results confirm that gender differences exist between male and female but, more interesting, data evidence that female treated with OC behaved differently from untreated women versus some plasmatic parameters and in the degree of DNA methylation. All this shows that, in clinical trials of intervention, it is necessary to introduce different populations of women in view of the fact that 1/3 of women assumes OC, in the awareness to respect the complexity of the gender dimension in accordance with the recommendations of WHO and the European Commission.
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