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Molecular characterization and regulation of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) and its receptor mRNA in the human ovary Nathwani, Parimal Suresh


With the recent detection of GnRH and its receptor (GnRH-R) in numerous extrapituitary tissues, it is hypothesized that GnRH acts as an autocrine/paracrine regulator of ovarian function. The direct involvement of GnRH in follicular atresia and modulation of ovarian steroidogenesis, further substantiate the extrapituitary actions of this decapeptide. In contrast to the hypothalamus and pituitary, the factors that regulate ovarian GnRH and its receptor remain poorly characterized. As gonadal steroids are key regulators of ovarian functions, the present study investigated the role of 17β-estradiol (E2) and progesterone (P4) in regulating the intrinsic ovarian GnRH axis. Using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), we have isolated the full-length GnRH-R coding region from human granulosa-luteal cells (hGLCs). Sequence analysis revealed that the ovarian GnRH-R cDNA is identical to its pituitary counterpart. Basal expression studies demonstrated that GnRH and GnRH-R mRNA levels significantly increased with time in culture, reaching levels of 160% and 170% on day 8 and 10 of culture compared to day 1 (p

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