Objective: To investigate dynamic thiol/disulphide homeostasis in autoimmune subclinical hypothyroidism.
Materials and methods: 48 patients with newly diagnosed subclinical hypothyroidism due to Hashimotos thyroiditis and not yet on any treatment and 48 healthy subjects without any known disease were enrolled. Thiol/disulfide homeostasis (native thiol(-SH)disulphide(-S-S-) exchanges) was measured in both groups with new method developed by Erel and Neselioglu. The half of the difference between total thiol (-SH+-S-S-) and -SH concentrations gave the -S-S- bond amount.
Results: In patients with subclinical hypothyroidism, -SH level and -SH/(-SH+-S-S-) ratio was found to be lower than that of the control group. -S-S- level (P=0.004), -S-S-/-SH (P=0.001), and -S-S-/(-SH+-S-S-) (P=0.001) ratio was higher in patients with subclinical hypothyroidism as compared to that of the control group. A positive correlation was found between anti-TPO and anti-Tg levels and -S-S-/-SH ve -S-S-/(-SH+-S-S-) levels while a negative correlation was found with -SH/(-SH+-S-S-) level.
Conclusions: Thiol/disulfide homeostasis was found to have a tendency towards -S-S- formation in patients with subclinical hypothyroidism and thyroid autoantibodies were correlated positively with thiol oxidation. Abnormal thiol/disulfide homeostasis in patients with Hashimotos thyroiditis, is whether a cause or a consequence, may be illustrated by using thiol-containing drugs and following autoantibody levels. The efficacy, dose and duration of thiol drugs may be monitored easily, effectively, quickly and cheaply by the method developed by Erel and Neselioglu.