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

Cytosol and nuclear estrogen receptor binding in the preoptic area and hypothalamus of female rats during pregnancy and ovariectomized, nulliparous rats after steroid priming: correlation with maternal behavior.

In a previous study, high nuclear estrogen receptor concentrations in the preoptic area (POA) were found on Day 16 of pregnancy to prime females to respond to a subsequent low dose of estradiol benzoate (EB) after hysterectomy-ovariectomy by exhibiting maternal behavior in 48 hr. Receptor concentrations in the POA were found to be higher than those in the hypothalamus (HYP). The present study investigated when nuclear estrogen receptors increase during pregnancy in POA and when the difference in receptor concentrations between POA and HYP occurs. An attempt was made to reproduce these pregnancy changes with a 16-day treatment of estrogen and progesterone in ovariectomized (OVX), nulliparous rats. In Experiment 1, we measured cytosol and nuclear estrogen receptor concentrations in the POA and HYP of female rats during pregnancy. Nuclear receptor concentrations in the POA increased beginning on Day 10, increased again on Day 16, and continued at this high level for the remainder of pregnancy. Nuclear estrogen receptor concentrations in the HYP remained at a lower level throughout most of pregnancy until Day 22 when they increased significantly. In Experiment 2, we tested the maternal behavior and measured estrogen receptor concentrations in OVX, steroid-primed, nulliparous rats after hysterectomy (H) and EB treatment. While 90% of estradiol ( E) + progesterone (P)-primed females displayed short-latency maternal behavior 48 hr after H and EB treatment, 46% of E + vehicle (V)-treated controls were maternal. At 0 hr (prior to H and EB treatment), there was a significantly larger nuclear receptor accumulation in the POA but significantly attenuated receptor binding in the HYP. P treatment significantly affected cytosol and nuclear estrogen receptor dynamics. Differences in nuclear estrogen receptor concentrations were shown to be based on the number of available binding sites and not to changes in receptor affinity for estradiol.[1]


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