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Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol 2014 Mar 01;160:1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.cbpc.2013.11.003.
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Steroid exposure during larval development of Xenopus laevis affects mRNA expression of the reproductive pituitary-gonadal axis in a sex- and stage-dependent manner.

Urbatzka R , Lorenz C , Wiedemann C , Lutz I , Kloas W .

Steroids are known to influence the reproductive pituitary-gonadal axis in adult amphibians. Here, we studied the effects of hormones on pituitary and gonadal mRNA expression during the development of Xenopus laevis. Tadpoles at NF 58 (prometamorphosis) and at NF 66 (freshly metamorphosed) were exposed for three days to 17β-estradiol (E2), tamoxifen (TAM), testosterone (T), dihydrotestosterone (DHT) at 10(-7)M, and flutamide (FLU) at 10(-6)M. In both genders at NF 58 and 66, T and DHT decreased luteinizing hormone beta (lhβ), but increased follicle stimulating hormone beta (fshβ), while FLU induced lhβ specifically in males. In the testis steroidogenic genes (p450 side chain cleavage enzyme, p450scc; steroid acute regulatory protein, star) at NF 58 showed a similar pattern as for lhβ, while the response at NF 66 was only partially present. In females, TAM induced lhβ at NF 58, while E2 decreased lhβ and increased fshβ at NF 66. In the ovaries, no alterations were observed for the steroidogenic genes. Summarizing, gonadotropic and steroidogenic mRNA expression may indicate control of androgen level during testis differentiation in male tadpoles at NF 58. In females the non-responsiveness of steroidogenic genes could be a sign of gonadal quiescence during pre-pubertal stages.

PubMed ID: 24239592
Article link: Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: cyp11a1 fshb gnrh1 lhb star