Dichotomy between serum free triiodothyronine and free thyroxine concentrations in familial thyroxine-binding globulin deficiency.J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1981 Nov; 53(5):917-22.JC
The mean serum total T4 (3.2 +/- 1.0 micrograms/100 ml) and T3 levels (83 +/- 29 ng/100 ml) in eight euthyroid patients with T4-binding globulin (TBG) deficiency from two families were significantly lower than those in either the unaffected relatives (P less than 0.05) or the control subjects (P less than 0.01). The lowest T4 and T3 values were found in the four hemizygotes (2.4 +/- 0.2 micrograms/100 ml and 69 +/- 25 ng/100 ml, respectively). In contrast to the absolute T4 and T3 levels, the mean percentages of free T4 and free T3 in the affected members were about twice as high as those in either the unaffected relatives or the controls. Despite an elevated percentage of free T4 in each of the TBG-deficient members, the mean absolute free T4 (FT4) level (0.89 +/- 0.20 ng/100 ml) was significantly lower than those in both control groups [1.31 +/- 0.2 ng/100 ml (P less than 0.02) and 1.24 +/- 0.30 ng/100 ml (P less than 0.01), respectively]. Serum FT4 levels were subnormal in three of four hemizygotes. In contrast to FT4, the mean FT3 level in the affected members (0.33 +/- 0.04 ng/100 ml) was significantly higher than that in either the nondeficient relatives (0.25 +/- 0.02 ng/100 ml; P less than 0.02) or the control subjects (0.26 +/- 0.04 ng/100 ml; P less than 0.02), whereas the ratio of FT3 to FT4 was about twice as high. The data suggest that in TBG deficiency, euthyroidism in maintained by a subtle equilibrium between low FT4 and high FT3 levels.