Article Text

Download PDFPDF

The aetiology and pathogenesis of hyperthyroidism
  1. Basil S. Hetzel


    Studies of thyroid stimulating activity of serum from thyrotoxic patients has revealed an abnormal prolonged response in the mouse present in 40-60% of patients depending on the criteria used. This agent designated long acting thyroid stimulator (LATS) is a 7S globulin. Transplacental passage of LATS accounts for neonatal thyrotoxicosis—a self-limited disease. LATS is also more readily detected in patients with large goitre, exophthalmos, pretibial myxoedema and recurrence following therapy. Thyroid ablation is usually followed by a fall in the level of LATS. A fall may also be produced by steroid therapy or immunosuppressive agents. LATS probably arises from lymphoid tissue which accounts for the non-suppressibility of the hypersecreting thyroid. Its discovery provides strong evidence that hyperthyroidism is often, though not always, a disorder of immunological tolerance.

    Statistics from

    Request Permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.