Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) is an important protein that helps in reproduction and puberty. There are many factors that help regulate SHBG. Read below to learn more about this protein and its effects on the body.
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) is not what your doctor would usually test for, even though it can tell you a lot about your health. However, you can request it from your doctor and plug your test results into Lab Test Analyzer. You will find all the information you need about your SHBG values, such as if your levels are optimal. And if they are not, it will tell you how to get there, using evidence-based lifestyle, diet, and supplement tips.
- Roles of Sex Hormone Binding Globulin
- Regulation of SHBG
- Irregular Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SBHG) Levels?
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) is a glycoprotein encoded by a single gene on the short arm of chromosome 17 in humans (R).
The liver produces SHBG and circulates throughout the body (R).
The production of SHBG fluctuates throughout the life cycle. Metabolic and hormonal factors primarily influence its production (R).
The difference in SHBG levels can also be due to genetic differences (R).
SHBG in Adulthood
In adults, plasma SHBG levels vary between people (R).
The variance can be due to a number of factors, such as endocrine and metabolic rates. The differences could also be inherited (R).
Mutations, such as polymorphism, can cause variation as well (R).
For example, a common SNP that results in a D327N substitution increases the half-life of SHBG in blood and increase SHBG levels (R).
SHBG levels are higher in women than men. SHBG levels in men are about 50% of that in women (R).
The occupancy of steroid-binding sites in SHBG is different between the two sexes as well (R).
During pregnancy, SHBG levels increase 10-fold in women due to increased SHBG production in the liver (R).
Roles of Sex Hormone Binding Globulin
1) SHBG Aids Reproduction
Sex steroids or their immediate precursors are produced in the gonad, adrenal glands, and placenta and are transported to their target tissues in the blood via steroid-binding proteins (R).
During mid to late pregnancy, SHBG levels in the maternal plasma increase 5- to 10- fold (R).
2) SHBG Helps Regulate Puberty
SHBG levels start low in newborn babies and increase in infants of both sexes until puberty (R).
After puberty, SHBG starts to decline (R).
SHBG levels decline more in boys than in girls (R).
The reason for this might be due to androgens that suppress SHBG levels (R).
3) SHBG Might Protect Against Diabetes
Women with diabetes had significantly lower SHBG levels compared to individuals without diabetes (R).
However, men with diabetes had only slightly lower SHBG levels than non-diabetic controls (R).
The relationship between SHBG levels and T2DM may seem to be the result of SHBG altering the bioavailability of the sex hormones (R).
Regulation of SHBG
There is a large variation in SHBG levels among individuals (R).
There are many factors that affect SHBG levels in the blood of an individual (R).
In most cases, the mechanism by which these factors affect the SHBG levels are unknown (R).
Everyone is different and our bodies can be complex. If you want to increase/decrease your SHBG levels, it’s best to analyze them with Lab Test Analyzer. This tool will compute, based on this and your other results, the best steps you can take that will bring you back to optimal.
Factors that Increase Level of SHBG in Blood:
- During pregnancy, SHBG levels increase 10-fold in women due to increased SHBG production in the liver (R).
- Weight Loss
- Alcoholic Cirrhosis
- HepB and C infections
- SHBG levels are significantly lower in patients with Hepatitis B or C infection (R).
- Growth Hormone Deficiency
Factors that Decrease Level of SHBG in Blood:
- Exogenous testosterone, a type of Androgen, has shown to decrease serum SHBG levels (R).
- Experiments suggest that insulin suppresses SHBG production in liver (R).
- Growth Hormone
- In response to a monosaccharide, SHBG levels are lowered (R).
- Metabolic Syndrome (R)
- Cushing’s Syndrome
- SHBG levels are lower in patients with Cushing’s Syndrome (R).
- Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (R)
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
- SHBG levels are lower in patients with polycystic ovary syndrome, which results in higher amount of active androgen (R).
- Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia
- Female patients with congenital adrenal hyperplasia have lower SHBG levels (R).
- The first is that Sex Hormone Binding Globulin directly participates in the delivery of steroid ligands to specific target cells (R).
- Secondly, SHBG itself acts as a ligand for a receptor (R).
- In women, only about 18% of the steroid-binding sites are occupied at serum concentrations, whereas about 56% of the sites are occupied by men (R).
- However, studies suggest that the relationship between SHBG and T2DM is independent of sex hormone levels (R).
- The exact mechanism by which SHBG influences risk of diabetes is unclear. However, SHBG and glucose metabolism impairment are linked together (R).
Irregular Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SBHG) Levels?
If you have not yet tested your SBHG levels, I recommend that you ask your doctor to do it. If you already have your blood test results and you’re not sure what to make of them, you need to check out Lab Test Analyzer. It does all the heavy lifting for you. No need to do thousands of hours of research on what to make of your various blood tests.
People don’t realize that their blood test results contain a gold mine of information that’s waiting to be unearthed. Unfortunately, not everyone has the time or the inclination to sift through dozens of research papers.
It’s super-simple, so that even if you don’t have any background in science, you will understand what your results mean and what you can do to get them in the optimal range.
Lab Test Analyzer gives you up-to-date scientific information about your lab results. In addition, you will get both lifestyle tips and natural solutions to help you optimize your health. You can also rely on our science-based Optimal Ranges to prevent potential health issues and maximize your overall well-being.
All of the content is backed by science and researched by a team of PhDs, professors, and scientists.
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