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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Oestrogen replacement in vivo rescues the dysfunction of pituitary somatotropes in ovariectomised aromatase knockout mice.

The mechanism of regulation of growth hormone (GH) secretion by oestrogens and androgens is still controversial. Available data on the action of oestrogens on GH expression and secretion in somatotropes is poorly understood. We previously reported that the aromatase knockout (ArKO) mouse with oestrogen deficiency and excessive androgen levels had dysfunctional somatotropes. In order to clarify the influence of androgen and oestrogen, we investigated the in vivo treatment of ovariectomised (OVX) ArKO mice with exogenous oestradiol (E2) on the mRNA expression of GH, GH-secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), GH-releasing hormone receptor (GHRH-R), pituitary-specific transcription factor (Pit-1), and somatostatin receptors (sst1-5) in pituitary glands. Circulating plasma GH levels were also evaluated. The results showed that ArKO/OVX mice have a low expression of pituitary GH, GHRH-R, GHS-R and Pit-1, and significantly reduced GH levels. Treatment of female ArKO/OVX (E2-deficient without excessive androgen) mice with E2 for 21 days enhanced expression of pituitary GHRH-R and Pit-1 to 151 and 168%, respectively, of that in mice without treatment. E2 treatment increased GH expression and plasma levels in ArKO/OVX mice to levels comparable with those in wild-type female mice. We conclude therefore that long-term E2 replacement rescues the dysfunction of somatotropes in ArKO/OVX mice through increases in expression of GH, GHRH-R, and Pit-1 in the pituitary somatotropes, whereas the level of androgen in this oestrogen-deficient female mouse does not significantly influence the function of somatotropes.[1]


  1. Oestrogen replacement in vivo rescues the dysfunction of pituitary somatotropes in ovariectomised aromatase knockout mice. Yan, M., Jones, M.E., Hernandez, M., Liu, D., Simpson, E.R., Chen, C. Neuroendocrinology (2005) [Pubmed]
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