Publications by authors named "Yiliyasi Mayila"

29 Publications

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The influence of psychological stress in early life on sexual maturation and sexual behavior in male and female rats.

Reprod Med Biol 2020 Apr 26;19(2):135-141. Epub 2019 Dec 26.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Tokushima University Tokushima Japan.

Purpose: We studied the influence of psychological stress during the early neonatal period on sexual maturation and sexual behavior in rats.

Methods: Neonatal male and female rats were divided into control (C) and maternal separation (MS) groups (n = 20-24 per group). The pups in the MS groups were placed in isolation cages for 240 minutes/d from postnatal days 2-11. Vaginal opening (VO) in females and preputial separation (PS) in males (indicators of sexual maturation) were monitored, as was the estrous cycle in females. Thereafter, sexual behavior was monitored twice at 13 and 15 weeks of age.

Results: As for sexual maturation, the onset of PS occurred significantly earlier in the MS group than in the C group, whereas the onset of VO did not differ between the groups. The length of the estrous cycle did not differ between the groups. The frequencies of sexual behaviors did not differ between the groups in either sex.

Conclusions: In conclusion, early-life psychological stress induced by MS advanced sexual maturation in male rats, whereas it did not affect sexual maturation in female rats. On the other hand, early-life psychological stress might not affect sexual behavior in adulthood in either sex.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/rmb2.12313DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7138938PMC
April 2020

The reduction in sexual behavior of adult female rats exposed to immune stress in the neonatal period is associated with reduced hypothalamic progesterone receptor expression.

Gen Comp Endocrinol 2020 03 9;288:113360. Epub 2019 Dec 9.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Purpose: We examined the mechanism by which neonatal immune stress reduces the sexual behavior of female rats in adulthood.

Methods: Neonatal female rats were randomly divided into 3 groups: control (n = 11), postnatal day 10 lipopolysaccharide (PND10LPS) (n = 23), and PND25LPS (n = 11) groups, which received intraperitoneal injections of LPS (100 μg/kg) or saline on PND10 and 25. Daily inspections of the vaginal opening (VO) were performed from PND27 to PND37. Thereafter, the frequency of estrus was assessed for 15 days. Female rats (at 11-12 weeks of age) were placed in a cage with male rats, and their sexual behavior was monitored for 30 min. The hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of factors related to sexual behavior were examined via real-time PCR.

Results: VO occurred later and the frequency of estrus was lower in the PND10LPS group compared to the control group. The number of lordosis behaviors and the total number of mounts performed by male partners were lower in the PND10LPS and PND25LPS groups than in the control group. Acceptability: The lordosis quotient and lordosis rating were lower in the PND10LPS group than in the control group. Proceptive behavior: the number of ear wiggling events was lower in the PND10LPS group than in the other groups, and the number of hops/darts was lower in the PND10LPS group than in the control group. The hypothalamic mRNA expression level of progesterone receptors (PR)A + B was lower in the PND10LPS group than in the control group, and the hypothalamic PRB mRNA expression level was lower in the PND10LPS and PND25LPS groups than in the control group.

Conclusion: Neonatal immune stress impeded sexual behavior and hypothalamic PR mRNA expression in female rats. Decreased progesterone activity in the hypothalamus might explain the reduction in sexual behavior seen in these rats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ygcen.2019.113360DOI Listing
March 2020

The effects of chronic oxytocin administration on body weight and food intake in DHT-induced PCOS model rats.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2020 Jan 21;36(1):55-60. Epub 2019 Jun 21.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima, Japan.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is commonly associated with metabolic disorders, which are exacerbated by obesity. Recent studies have revealed that oxytocin contributes to metabolic, appetite, and body weight regulation. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of chronic administration of oxytocin on body weight, food intake, and fat mass in a dihydrotestosterone-induced rat model of PCOS. Body weight, body weight change, and relative cumulative food intake were significantly lower in the oxytocin-treated PCOS rats than in the vehicle-treated control PCOS rats. Similarly, visceral adipocyte size was significantly smaller in the oxytocin-treated PCOS rats than in the vehicle-treated control PCOS rats. On the other hand, the numbers of cystic follicles in the ovary did not differ between the two groups. The chronic administration of oxytocin did not affect the rats' serum aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, or lactate dehydrogenase levels, indicating that it does not have adverse effects on hepatic function. These findings suggest that oxytocin could be a candidate drug for preventing the onset of obesity-related metabolic disorders in PCOS patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09513590.2019.1631276DOI Listing
January 2020

Oxytocin treatment reduced food intake and body fat and ameliorated obesity in ovariectomized female rats.

Neuropeptides 2019 Jun 14;75:49-57. Epub 2019 Mar 14.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Recent studies have shown that oxytocin reduces food intake and body weight gain and promotes lipolysis in some species, including humans. Interestingly, these effects of oxytocin are more marked in obese individuals. Although the menopausal loss of ovarian function induces increased visceral adiposity and some metabolic disorders, no safe medical interventions for these conditions have been established. In this study, we evaluated the effects of oxytocin on appetite, body weight, and fat mass in ovariectomized rats. Six-day oxytocin treatment attenuated cumulative food intake and body weight gain, and reduced visceral and subcutaneous fat weight and adipocyte cell area in ovariectomized rats. Blood examinations indicated that 6-day oxytocin treatment did not alter renal or hepatic functions. Instead, it might prevent ovariectomy-induced liver damage. In addition, acute oxytocin treatment did not affect body temperature or locomotor activity. These results indicate that oxytocin might be useful for treating or preventing menopause-induced metabolic disorders, without causing any adverse effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.npep.2019.03.002DOI Listing
June 2019

The reduction in sexual behavior induced by neonatal immune stress is not related to androgen levels in male rats.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2018 Dec 18;71:163-171. Epub 2018 Aug 18.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Purpose: It is known that various types of stress in early life increase the incidence of diabetes, myocardial infarctions, and psychiatric disorders in adulthood. We examined the mechanism by which neonatal immune stress reduces sexual behavior in adult male rats.

Methods: Male rats were randomly divided into 3 groups: the control (n = 17), postnatal day 10 lipopolysaccharide (PND10LPS) (n = 31), and PND25LPS (n = 16) groups, which received intraperitoneal injections of LPS (100 μg/kg) or saline (injection volume: ≤0.1 ml/g) on postnatal days 10 and 25. In experiment 1, male rats (age: 11 to 12 weeks) were put together with female rats in a one-to-one setting for mating, and sexual behavior (mounting, intromission, and ejaculation) was monitored for 30 minutes. The serum levels of luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone (T) and the hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of factors related to sexual behavior were examined. After experiment 1 finished, the remaining 37 male rats were used for experiment 2: the control group (n = 8), PND10 LPS group (n = 21) and PND25LPS group (n = 8) these rats had been given an i.p. injection of the saline during the expriment1. All of the rats were orchidectomized at 14 weeks of age. After a 3-week recovery period, a silastic tube containing crystalline T was subcutaneously implanted into the back of each rat. The rats' sexual behavior, serum hormone concentrations, and hypothalamic mRNA expression levels were assessed.

Results: In experiment 1, preputial separation occurred significantly later in the PND10LPS group than in the control group. The frequency of sexual behavior was significantly lower in the PND10LPS group than in the control group. The serum T concentrations of the PND10LPS and PND25LPS groups were significantly lower than that of the control group, but the serum LH concentrations of the 3 groups did not differ significantly. The hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of progesterone receptor B (PRB) and gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) were significantly lower in the PND10LPS and PND25LPS groups than in the control group, whereas the hypothalamic PRA + B mRNA expression levels of the 3 groups did not differ significantly. In experiment 2, after T supplementation the frequency of sexual behavior was significantly lower in the PND10LPS and PND25LPS groups than in the control group, although there were no significant differences in the serum T or LH concentrations or the hypothalamic PRB, PRA + B, or GnRH mRNA expression levels of the 3 groups.

Conclusion: In male rats, immune stress in the early neonatal period delayed sexual maturation, reduced sexual behavior, suppressed the serum T concentration, and downregulated the hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of GnRH and the PR in adulthood. The delayed sexual maturation was presumed to have been caused by the reduction in the serum T concentration. However, the rats that experienced neonatal stress exhibited reduced sexual behavior irrespective of their serum T concentrations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2018.08.003DOI Listing
December 2018

Prenatal undernutrition suppresses sexual behavior in female rats.

Gen Comp Endocrinol 2018 12 9;269:46-52. Epub 2018 Aug 9.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, 3-18-15. Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Infectious, psychological and metabolic stresses in the prenatal and early neonatal period induce long-lasting effects in physiological function and increase the risk of metabolic disorders later in life. We examined the sexual behavior of female rats that were subjected to undernutrition in the prenatal period. Eight pregnant rats were divided into two groups: a maternal normal nutrition group (mNN; n = 4) and a maternal undernutrition group (mUN; n = 4), which received 50% of the daily food intake amount of the mNN group from gestation day 13 to delivery. Nine and seven female offspring were randomly selected from the mNN and mUN groups, respectively. Vaginal opening (VO), estrous cycle length, sexual behavior and mRNA expression levels of the factors that regulate sexual behavior were observed. In the mUN group, VO day was later, the estrous cycle was longer, and the lordosis quotient and lordosis rating were lower than in the mNN group; such differences were not seen in other sexual performances, such as ear wiggles, darts, kick bouts and box. The hypothalamic mRNA expression level of progesterone receptor (PR) A + B and oxytocin (OT) were significantly lower in the mUN group than in the mNN group. These findings indicated that prenatal undernutrition disrupted puberty onset, the estrous cycle, sexual behavior and hypothalamic mRNA expression of PR and OT in female rat pups.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ygcen.2018.08.013DOI Listing
December 2018

Prenatal undernutrition affects the phenotypes of PCOS model rats.

J Endocrinol 2018 Aug 8. Epub 2018 Aug 8.

M Irahara, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Tokushima University, Tokushima, Japan.

Although polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is among the most common endocrine disorders in women of reproductive age, its etiology remains poorly understood. From the perspective of developmental origins of health and disease, some studies have investigated the relationship between low birth weight and the prevalence of PCOS and/or PCOS phenotypes in humans; however, the results of these studies were inconclusive. Here, we evaluated the effects of prenatal undernutrition on the metabolic and reproductive phenotypes of dihydrotestosterone-induced PCOS model rats. The PCOS model rats showed increased body weight, food intake, fat weight, adipocyte size, and upregulation of inflammatory cytokines in adipose tissue; prenatal undernutrition exacerbated these metabolic changes. Prenatal undernutrition also increased the gene expression of hypothalamic orexigenic factor and decreased the gene expression of anorexigenic factor in the PCOS model rats. In addition, the PCOS model rats exhibited irregular cyclicity, polycystic ovaries, and disrupted gene expression of ovarian steroidogenic enzymes. Interestingly, prenatal undernutrition attenuated these reproductive changes in the PCOS model rats. Our results suggest that in dihydrotestosterone-induced PCOS model rats, prenatal undernutrition exacerbates the metabolic phenotypes, whereas it improves the reproductive phenotypes, and that such phenotypic changes may be induced by the alteration of some peripheral and central factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1530/JOE-18-0335DOI Listing
August 2018

Prenatal undernutrition attenuates fasting-induced reproductive dysfunction in pre-pubertal male rats.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2018 Dec 17;71:30-33. Epub 2018 Jul 17.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Prenatal undernutrition affects various physiological functions, such as metabolic and reproductive functions, after birth, and such changes are associated with the pathogeneses of certain diseases. It has been hypothesized that these changes are predictive adaptive responses that help individuals to endure similar conditions in the postnatal period. Thus, we evaluated the effects of prenatal undernutrition on the responses of the body weight (BW) regulation system and reproductive functions to fasting in the pre-pubertal period in male rats. Prenatally normally nourished and undernourished rats exhibited similar reductions in BW and visceral fat after 48 h fasting in the pre-pubertal period. Furthermore, these two groups displayed similar fasting-induced patterns of change in their hypothalamic levels of appetite regulatory factors; i.e., neuropeptide Y and pro-opiomelanocortin. These results indicate that prenatal undernutrition had no marked effects on BW regulation in male rats. On the other hand, serum luteinizing hormone and testosterone levels were decreased by 48 h fasting in the prenatally normally nourished rats, whereas the levels of these hormones did not change in the prenatally undernourished rats. However, the hypothalamic mRNA level of kisspeptin 1 (Kiss1), which is a positive regulator of gonadotropin-releasing hormone/gonadotropins, was reduced by fasting in both groups. These results indicate that prenatal undernutrition might attenuate fasting-induced reproductive dysfunction in the postnatal period; however, these changes might not be induced by alterations in the hypothalamic Kiss1 system. Further studies are needed to clarify the mechanisms involved in these changes in reproductive function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2018.07.005DOI Listing
December 2018

Pilot study of the optimal protocol of low dose step-up follicle stimulating hormone therapy for infertile women.

Reprod Med Biol 2018 Jul 12;17(3):315-324. Epub 2018 Jun 12.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Tokushima University Tokushima Japan.

Purpose: To evaluate the optimized protocol of low dose follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) therapy that has a starting dose of 50 IU/62.5 IU with a small increment dose (12.5 IU) for women with World Health Organization (WHO) II ovulatory disorder and unexplained infertility.

Methods: Anovulatory women with WHO group II ovulatory disorder (ovulation induction [OI] patients, n = 29), and with an unexplained infertility (ovarian stimulation [OS] patients, n = 21) were enrolled. The protocol of low dose step-up FSH therapy was optimized for the starting dose as 50 IU (body mass index [BMI] < 20 group) and 62.5 IU (BMI ≥ 20 group) with the increment dose of 12.5 IU. Study outcomes were ovulation, monofollicular development and other variables.

Results: In the OIpatients, the ovulation rate was 100% (BMI < 20 group) and 90.9% (BMI ≥ 20 group). Monofollicular development was 80.0% (BMI < 20) and 77.3% (BMI ≥ 20). The pregnancy rate was 60% (3/5 BMI < 20) and 18.2% (4/22 BMI ≥ 20). There was no multiple pregnancy. In the OSpatients, the ovulation rate was 100%. Monofollicular development was 85.7% (BMI < 20) and 76.6% (BMI ≥ 20). No pregnancy was achieved in the OSpatients.

Conclusion: Optimized protocol of low dose FSH therapy setting a starting dose 50 IU/62.5 IU by BMI with an increment dose of 12.5 IU was safe and highly effective in WHO group II anovulatory patients. However, this protocol seemed uneffective for patients with unexplained infertility.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/rmb2.12208DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6046519PMC
July 2018

Effects of Low Energy Availability on Reproductive Functions and Their Underlying Neuroendocrine Mechanisms.

J Clin Med 2018 Jul 5;7(7). Epub 2018 Jul 5.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

It is known that metabolic disturbances suppress reproductive functions in females. The mechanisms underlying metabolic and nutritional effects on reproductive functions have been established based on a large body of clinical and experimental data. From the 1980s to 1990s, it was revealed that disrupted gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) secretion is the main cause of reproductive impairments in metabolic and nutritional disorders. From the late 1990s to early 2000s, it was demonstrated that, in addition to their primary functions, some appetite- or metabolism-regulating factors affect GnRH secretion. Furthermore, in the early 2000s, kisspeptin, which is a potent positive regulator of GnRH secretion, was newly discovered, and it has been revealed that kisspeptin integrates the effects of metabolic status on GnRH neurons. Recent studies have shown that kisspeptin mediates at least some of the effects of appetite- and metabolism-regulating factors on GnRH neurons. Thus, kisspeptin might be a useful clinical target for treatments aimed at restoring reproductive functions in individuals with metabolic or nutritional disturbances, such as those who exercise excessively, experience marked weight loss, or suffer from eating disorders. This paper presents a review of what is currently known about the effects of metabolic status on reproductive functions and their underlying mechanisms by summarizing the available evidence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jcm7070166DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6068835PMC
July 2018

Prenatal undernutrition decreases the anorectic response to septic doses of lipopolysaccharides in adulthood in male rats.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2018 Oct 30;69:39-43. Epub 2018 Jun 30.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima, 770-8503, Japan.

Prenatal undernutrition affects some physiological functions after birth, and such changes are associated with the pathogenesis of various diseases. Recently, we have reported that prenatally undernourished male rats exhibited stronger febrile and anorectic responses to immune stress induced by moderate-dose lipopolysaccharide (LPS) treatment in adulthood. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of prenatal undernutrition on stress responses to the administration of a septic dose (3 mg/kg) of LPS in later life, mainly focusing on changes in hypothalamic proinflammatory cytokine expression. We also evaluated the expression of hypothalamic and peripheral reproductive factors because it has been suggested that the stress responses of reproductive functions are affected by prenatal and neonatal stress and nutritional conditions. As a result, we found that prenatal undernutrition attenuated the anorectic response to septic-dose LPS treatment in adulthood in male rats. In addition, it attenuated the LPS-induced suppression of serum testosterone levels and the changes in hypothalamic proinflammatory cytokine (interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor-α, and IL-6) expression induced by septic-dose LPS treatment in adulthood. These results suggest that prenatal undernutrition attenuates stress and reproductive responses under severe immune stress conditions. The downregulation of hypothalamic stress-related factor expression might be involved in such attenuated stress responses, which could be one of the protective mechanisms used to prevent excessive immune responses and aid survival.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2018.06.010DOI Listing
October 2018

Effects of chronic testosterone administration on the degree of preference for a high-fat diet and body weight in gonadal-intact and ovariectomized female rats.

Behav Brain Res 2018 09 12;349:102-108. Epub 2018 Mar 12.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Energy balance and reproductive functions are closely linked in some species. The sex hormones (estrogens and androgens) are involved in the regulation of appetite, metabolism, body weight (BW), and body composition in mammals. Previously, we showed that the effects of testosterone on BW, appetite, and fat weight were markedly affected by alterations to the gonadal hormonal milieu. In this study, we examined whether testosterone administration changes food preferences and whether these effects of testosterone depend on gonadal status in female rats. We also evaluated the underlying mechanisms responsible for these effects, focusing on hypothalamic inflammation and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. In gonadal-intact (sham) female rats, chronic testosterone administration promoted a preference for a high-fat diet (HFD) and increased BW gain, fat weight, and adipocyte size, whereas no such effects were observed in ovariectomized (OVX) rats. Testosterone administration increased hypothalamic interleukin-1 mRNA expression in the sham rats, but not the OVX rats. On the contrary, testosterone administration decreased the hypothalamic mRNA levels of ER stress-response genes in the OVX rats, but not the sham rats. These testosterone-induced alterations in OVX rats might represent a regulatory mechanism for preventing hypothalamic inflammation and the overconsumption of a HFD. In conclusion, testosterone's effects on food preferences and the subsequent changes were affected by gonadal status. Testosterone-induced changes in hypothalamic inflammatory cytokine production and ER stress might be related to these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2018.02.021DOI Listing
September 2018

Neurokinin B receptor agonist and Dynorphin receptor antagonist stimulated luteinizing hormone secretion in fasted male rodents.

Endocr J 2018 Apr 23;65(4):485-492. Epub 2018 Feb 23.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Kisspeptin/neurokinin B (NKB)/dynorphin (Dyn) (KNDy) neuron in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus plays a key role in GnRH/LH pulsatile secretion. We aimed to determine whether stimulation of NKB/neurokinin 3 receptor (NK3R) signaling and inhibition of Dyn/kappa-opioid receptor (KOR) signaling recover LH secretion that is suppressed by acute fasting in male rats. Furthermore, we determined dose dependent effect of NKB/NK3R signaling on serum LH level under acute fasting condition in male mice. Mature male rats were injected saline (0.1 mL) and senktide (20 μg/kg), a NK3R agonist, or nor-BNI (800 μg/kg), a KOR antagonist intraperitoneally (ip) after 72 h fasting. And mature male mice were injected multiple doses of senktide, ip after 48 h fasting. Blood and brain sample were collected 90 min after injections for LH measurement and hypothalamic mRNA expressions. All three studies showed significantly lower LH concentration in fasted groups than non-fasted groups. Senktide did not recover LH suppressed by acute fasting in male rats, whereas nor-BNI injected male rats showed significantly higher LH than 72 h fasted male rats (p < 0.05). Mice study showed significantly higher LH concentration in higher doses senktide groups than 48 h fasted group and one of lower doses senktide group. These results suggest that stimulation of NKB/NK3R signaling and attenuation of Dyn/KOR signaling could recover suppressed LH secretion under acute fasting condition in male rodents.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ17-0136DOI Listing
April 2018

The roles of kisspeptin and gonadotropin inhibitory hormone in stress-induced reproductive disorders.

Endocr J 2018 Feb 26;65(2):133-140. Epub 2018 Jan 26.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Several kinds of stress suppress the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis and reproductive behavior in humans and animals. These changes can eventually cause diseases and disorders, such as amenorrhea and infertility. In previous studies, it has been shown that stress-related factors, e.g., corticotropin-releasing hormone, cortisol, and pro-inflammatory cytokines, promote the stress-induced suppression of the HPG axis. However, these mechanisms are not sufficient to explain how stress suppresses HPG axis activity, and it has been suggested that some other factors might also be involved. In the early 21st century, novel neuroendocrine peptides, kisspeptin and gonadotropin inhibitory hormone (GnIH)/RFamide-related peptide 3 (RFRP-3), which directly regulate GnRH/gonadotropin synthesis and secretion, were newly discovered. Growing evidence indicates that kisspeptin and GnIH/RFRP-3 play pivotal roles in the stress-induced disruption of the HPG axis and reproductive behavior in addition to their physiological functions. This review summarizes what is currently known about the roles of kisspeptin and GnIH/RFRP-3 in stress-induced reproductive disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ18-0026DOI Listing
February 2018

Prenatal undernutrition disrupted the sexual maturation, but not the sexual behavior, in male rats.

Reprod Med Biol 2017 10 16;16(4):325-329. Epub 2017 Sep 16.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Tokushima University Tokushima Japan.

Purpose: Exposure to various stressors, including psychological, metabolic, and immune, in the perinatal period induces long-lasting effects in physiological function and increase the risk of metabolic disorders in later life. In the present study, sexual maturation and sexual behavior were assessed in prenatally undernourished mature male rats.

Methods: All the pregnant rats were divided into the maternal normal nutrition (mNN) group and the maternal undernutrition (mUN) group. The mUN mothers received 50% of the amount of the daily food intake of the mNN mothers. Preputial separation and sexual behavior were observed in randomly selected pups of the mNN and mUN groups.

Results: The body weight of the mothers was significantly lighter in the mUN group than in the mNN group. Similarly, the pups in the mUN group showed a significantly lower body weight than those in the mNN group from postnatal day (PND) 1 to PND 15. The preputial separation day was significantly delayed in the mUN group, compared to the mNN group. Sexual behavior did not show any significant difference between the two groups.

Conclusion: These findings indicated that prenatal undernutrition delayed sexual maturation, but did not suppress sexual behavior, in mature male rats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/rmb2.12045DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5715893PMC
October 2017

Clinical outcome of various metformin treatments for women with polycystic ovary syndrome.

Reprod Med Biol 2017 04 4;16(2):179-187. Epub 2017 Apr 4.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Tokushima University Kuramoto Japan.

Aim: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is an ovulatory disorder and insulin resistance and diabetes are involved in its pathophysiology. Metformin, an anti-diabetic agent, has been reported to be useful to induce ovulation.

Methods: Metformin treatment was classified into four types: (1) clomiphene-metformin combination treatment for clomiphene-resistant patients; (2) clomiphene-metformin combination for clomiphene-sensitive patients; (3) clomiphene-metformin combination for naïve patients; and (4) metformin monotherapy. The patients underwent physical, endocrinological, and clinical examinations for their ovulation rates, pregnancy rates, and follicular development.

Results: The ovulation rates, pregnancy rates, and single follicular development were not significantly different among the clomiphene-metformin combination treatment groups. In the Body Mass Index (BMI) subanalysis, the pregnancy rate was higher in the BMI≥30 kg/m group than in the other three groups with a BMI of ≤30 kg/m in both cycles and cases. The ovulation rates and pregnancy rates were significantly higher in the group with a fasting insulin of ≥15 μU/mL than in the groups with a fasting insulin of <15 μU/mL in both cycles and cases.

Conclusion: Clomiphene-metformin combination treatment appears to be useful, at least for clomiphene-resistant patients, and a BMI of >30 kg/m and a fasting insulin of ≥15 μU/mL appear to be predictors of a good result with this treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/rmb2.12026DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5661811PMC
April 2017

The effects of chronic testosterone administration on hypothalamic gonadotropin-releasing hormone regulatory factors (Kiss1, NKB, pDyn and RFRP) and their receptors in female rats.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2018 May 29;34(5):437-441. Epub 2017 Nov 29.

a Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology , Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School , Tokushima , Japan.

The effects of androgens on gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) secretion in females have not been fully established. To clarify the direct effects of androgens on hypothalamic reproductive factors, we evaluated the effects of chronic testosterone administration on hypothalamic GnRH regulatory factors in ovariectomized (OVX) female rats. Both testosterone and estradiol reduced the serum luteinizing hormone levels of OVX female rats, indicating that, as has been found for estrogen, testosterone suppresses GnRH secretion via negative feedback. Similarly, the administration of testosterone or estradiol suppressed the hypothalamic mRNA levels of kisspeptin and neurokinin B, both of which are positive regulators of GnRH, whereas it did not affect the hypothalamic mRNA levels of the kisspeptin receptor or neurokinin-3 receptor. On the contrary, the administration of testosterone, but not estradiol, suppressed the hypothalamic mRNA expression of prodynorphin, which is a negative regulator of GnRH. The administration of testosterone did not alter the rats' serum estradiol levels, indicating that testosterone's effects on hypothalamic factors might be induced by its androgenic activity. These findings suggest that as well as estrogen, androgens have negative feedback effects on GnRH in females and that the underlying mechanisms responsible for these effects are similar, but do not completely correspond, to the mechanisms underlying the effects of estrogen on GnRH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09513590.2017.1409709DOI Listing
May 2018

The effects of chronic testosterone administration on body weight, food intake, and fat weight were age-dependent.

Steroids 2017 11 8;127:18-23. Epub 2017 Sep 8.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Previously, we showed that chronic testosterone administration increased body weight (BW) and food intake (FI), but did not alter fat weight, in young female rats. To examine our hypothesis that the effects of androgens on BW, FI and body composition might be age-dependent, the effects of chronic testosterone administration were evaluated in rats of different ages; i.e., young and middle-aged rats. Although chronic testosterone administration increased BW gain, FI, and feed efficiency in both young and middle-aged rats, it increased visceral fat weight in middle-aged rats, but not in young rats. Therefore, it is possible that testosterone promotes the conversion of energy to adipose tissue and exacerbates fat accumulation in older individuals. In addition, although the administration of testosterone increased the serum leptin level, it did not alter hypothalamic neuropeptide Y mRNA expression in middle-aged rats. On the contrary, the administration of testosterone did not affect the serum leptin levels of young rats. Thus, testosterone might induce hypothalamic leptin resistance, which could lead to fat accumulation in older individuals. Testosterone might disrupt the mechanisms that protect against adiposity and hyperphagia and represent a risk factor for excessive body weight and obesity, especially in older females.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.steroids.2017.08.014DOI Listing
November 2017

Developmental changes in hypothalamic SF-1, POMC, and ERα mRNA expression and their sensitivity to fasting in male and female rats.

Endocr J 2017 Dec 6;64(12):1157-1163. Epub 2017 Sep 6.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Estrogen plays pivotal roles in body weight regulation through its effects on central estrogen receptor-α (ERα) expression. ERα is found on neurons that express the hypothalamic anorexigenic factors steroidogenic factor-1 (SF-1) and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mediate these effects of estrogen. As the gonadal hormonal milieu is drastically altered during the developmental period, the expression levels of SF-1 and POMC might also change during this period. In this study, we showed that hypothalamic SF-1 and ERα mRNA expression did not change during the neonatal to pre-pubertal period (from postnatal day 10 to 30), and there were no significant differences in the hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of these molecules between males and females at any examined age. On the other hand, hypothalamic POMC mRNA expression and the serum estradiol (E2) level increased during development in both males and females. Significant positive correlations were detected between the serum E2 level and hypothalamic POMC mRNA expression in both males and females. Hypothalamic ERα and POMC mRNA expression were decreased by fasting in male rats at all examined ages, whereas fasting had no effect on hypothalamic ERα or POMC mRNA expression in the female rats. These results indicate that the regulatory system involving E2 and hypothalamic POMC expression might already be established in the neonatal period and that the roles of POMC and ERα in body weight regulation during development might differ slightly between males and females.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ17-0140DOI Listing
December 2017

Effects of dihydrotestosterone administration on the expression of reproductive and body weight regulatory factors in ovariectomized and estradiol-treated female rats.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2018 Jan 11;34(1):73-77. Epub 2017 Jun 11.

a Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences , Tokushima University Graduate School , Tokushima , Japan.

To clarify the direct effects of androgens, the changes in the hypothalamic levels of reproductive and appetite regulatory factors induced by chronic dihydrotestosterone (DHT) administration were evaluated in female rats. DHT treatment increased the BW and food intake of the ovariectomized rats, but not the estradiol (E2)-treated rats. DHT administration suppressed the expression of a hypothalamic anorexigenic factor. Although the kisspeptin (Kiss1) mRNA levels of the anterior hypothalamic block (the anteroventral periventricular nucleus, AVPV) were increased in the E2-treated rats, DHT administration did not affect the Kiss1 mRNA levels of the AVPV in the ovariectomized or E2-treated rats. Conversely, DHT administration reduced the Kiss1 mRNA levels of the posterior hypothalamic block (the arcuate nucleus, ARC) in the ovariectomized rats. Although the Kiss1 mRNA levels of the posterior hypothalamic block (ARC) were decreased in the E2-treated rats, DHT administration did not affect the Kiss1 mRNA levels of the ARC in these rats. Serum luteinizing hormone levels of these groups exhibited similar patterns to the Kiss1 mRNA levels of the ARC. These results showed that DHT affects the production of hypothalamic reproductive and appetite regulatory factors, and that these effects of DHT differ according to the estrogen milieu.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09513590.2017.1337096DOI Listing
January 2018

The effects of chronic testosterone administration on body weight, food intake, and adipose tissue are changed by estrogen treatment in female rats.

Horm Behav 2017 07 17;93:53-61. Epub 2017 May 17.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

In females, estrogens play pivotal roles in preventing excess body weight (BW) gain. On the other hand, the roles of androgens in female BW, appetite, and energy metabolism have not been fully examined. We hypothesized that androgens' effects on food intake (FI) and BW regulation change according to the estrogens' levels. To evaluate this hypothesis, the effects of chronic testosterone administration in ovariectomized (OVX) female rats with or without estradiol supplementation were examined in this study. Chronic testosterone administration decreased BW, FI, white adipose tissue (WAT) weight, and adipocyte size in OVX rats, whereas it increased BW, WAT weight, and adipocyte size in OVX with estradiol-administered rats. In addition, chronic testosterone administration increased hypothalamic CYP19a1 mRNA levels in OVX rats, whereas it did not alter CYP19a1 mRNA levels in OVX with estradiol-administered rats, indicating that conversion of testosterone to estrogens in the hypothalamus may be activated in testosterone-administered OVX rats. Furthermore, chronic testosterone administration decreased hypothalamic TNF-α mRNA levels in OVX rats, whereas it increased hypothalamic IL-1β mRNA levels in OVX with estradiol-administered rats. On the other hand, IL-1β and TNF-α mRNA levels in visceral and subcutaneous WAT and liver were not changed by chronic testosterone administration in both groups. These data indicate that the effects of chronic testosterone administration on BW, FI, WAT weight, and adipocyte size were changed by estradiol treatment in female rats. Testosterone has facilitative effects on BW gain, FI, and adiposity under the estradiol-supplemented condition, whereas it has inhibitory effects in the non-supplemented condition. Differences in the responses of hypothalamic factors, such as aromatase and inflammatory cytokines, to testosterone might underlie these opposite effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yhbeh.2017.05.008DOI Listing
July 2017

Relationship between serum anti-Mullerian hormone and clinical parameters in polycystic ovary syndrome.

Endocr J 2017 May 1;64(5):531-541. Epub 2017 Apr 1.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is an ovulatory disorder that affects 6-10% of women of reproductive age. Serum AMH level may be an additional factor, or surrogate of PCOM, in the diagnostic criteria of PCOS. We evaluated the correlations between the serum AMH level and various endocrine and metabolic features in PCOS using the latest fully automated assay. Serum AMH level was compared between 114 PCOS patient (PCOS group) and 95 normal menstrual cycle women (Control group). Correlations between serum AMH level and various endocrine and metabolic factors were analysed in PCOS group. The serum AMH level was significantly higher in the PCOS group (8.35±8.19 ng/mL) than in the Control group (4.99±3.23 ng/mL). The serum AMH level was independently affected by age and the presence of PCOS on multiple regression analysis. Ovarian volume per ovary (OPVO) showed the strongest positive correlation (r=0.62) with the serum AMH level among related factors. On receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis, the cut-off value of AMH for the diagnosis of PCOS was 7.33 ng/mL, but this value did not have high efficacy (sensitivity 44.7%, specificity 76.8%). A cut-off value of 10 ng/mL had a high specificity of 92.6%, although the sensitivity was low (24.6%). The serum AMH level was elevated and reflected ovarian size in PCOS patients. The serum AMH level could be a surrogate for ultrasound findings of the ovaries in PCOS and might be useful for estimating ovarian findings without transvaginal ultrasound in the diagnosis of PCOS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ16-0501DOI Listing
May 2017

The effects of prenatal undernutrition and a high-fat postnatal diet on central and peripheral orexigenic and anorexigenic factors in female rats.

Endocr J 2017 Jun 17;64(6):597-604. Epub 2017 Mar 17.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Prenatal undernutrition and postnatal overnutrition increase the risk of some peripheral and central metabolic disorders in adulthood. We speculated that disturbances of appetite/metabolic regulatory factors might already have been established in the early stages of life and contribute to obesity later in life. The effects of a high-fat diet on the levels of peripheral and central appetite/metabolic regulatory factors were compared between the offspring of normally nourished dams and those of undernourished dams in the peri-pubertal period. In the offspring of the normally nourished dams (control), the consumption of the high-fat diet resulted in lower hypothalamic mRNA levels of orexigenic factors (neuropeptide Y (NPY) and prepro-orexin (pporexin)), whereas no such changes were seen in the offspring of the undernourished dams (subjected to intrauterine growth restriction). These results indicate that in high-energy conditions either the adaptive response does not function properly or has not been established in the offspring of undernourished dams. Because NPY and pporexin are negatively regulated by leptin, these findings suggest that in the intrauterine growth restriction group, the leptin resistance of hypothalamic functions, which is usually caused by diet-induced obesity in adulthood, had already been established in the peri-pubertal period.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ16-0593DOI Listing
June 2017

Kisspeptin mRNA expression is increased in the posterior hypothalamus in the rat model of polycystic ovary syndrome.

Endocr J 2017 Jan 24;64(1):7-14. Epub 2016 Sep 24.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Hypersecretion of luteinizing hormone (LH) is a common endocrinological finding of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). This derangement might have a close relationship with hypothalamic kisspeptin expression that is thought to be a key regulator of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). We evaluated the relationship between the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis (HPG axis) and kisspeptin using a rat model of PCOS induced by letrozole. Letrozole pellets (0.4 mg/day) and control pellets were placed subcutaneously onto the backs of 3-week-old female Wistar rats. Body weight, vaginal opening and vaginal smear were checked daily. Blood and tissues of ovary, uterus and brain were collected at 12-weeks of age. An hypothalamic block was cut into anterior and posterior blocks, which included the anteroventral periventricular nucleus (AVPV) and the arcuate nucleus (ARC), respectively, in order to estimate hypothalamic kisspeptin expression in each area. The letrozole group showed a similar phenotype to human PCOS such as heavier body weight, heavier ovary, persistent anovulatory state, multiple enlarged follicles with no corpus luteum and higher LH and testosterone (T) levels compared to the control group. Kisspeptin mRNA expression in the posterior hypothalamic block including ARC was higher in the letrozole group than in the control group although its expression in the anterior hypothalamic block was similar between groups. These results suggest that enhanced KNDy neuron activity in ARC contributes to hypersecretion of LH in PCOS and might be a therapeutic target to rescue ovulatory disorder of PCOS in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1507/endocrj.EJ16-0282DOI Listing
January 2017

Effects of chronic testosterone administration on body weight and food intake differ among pre-pubertal, gonadal-intact, and ovariectomized female rats.

Behav Brain Res 2016 08 29;309:35-43. Epub 2016 Apr 29.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

In females, estrogens play pivotal roles in preventing excessive body weight gain. On the other hand, the roles of androgen in female appetite and body weight regulation have not been fully studied. In this study, whether the roles of androgen in the regulation of body weight and appetite were different among ages and/or the estrogen milieu in females was evaluated. Body weight gain and food intake were increased by chronic testosterone administration in pre-pubertal and gonadal-intact female rats, but not in ovariectomized female rats. Testosterone administration also affected the serum leptin level and adipose leptin gene expression levels differently in each experimental condition. Hypothalamic mRNA levels of ERα, which plays pivotal roles in regulation of body weight and metabolism, were decreased by chronic testosterone administration in pre-pubertal and gonadal-intact female rats, but not in ovariectomized female rats. These results indicate that the effects of testosterone on body weight and appetite differed among ages and/or estrogen milieu in female rats, and that attenuation of estrogens' actions on the hypothalamus might be partly involved in the androgen-induced increases of body weight gain and food intake in females.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2016.04.048DOI Listing
August 2016

Effects of chronic DHEA treatment on central and peripheral reproductive parameters, the onset of vaginal opening and the estrous cycle in female rats.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2016 Sep 28;32(9):752-755. Epub 2016 Mar 28.

a Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology , Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School , Tokushima , Japan.

The neonatal and/or prepubertal androgen milieu affects sexual maturation and reproductive function in adulthood. However, the effects of chronic dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) treatment on reproductive functions have not been fully elucidated. Therefore, the reproductive phenotypes and parameters of rats that had been subjected to chronic DHEA treatment were evaluated in this study. The chronic DHEA-treated (from postnatal day 23-12 weeks of age) rats exhibited earlier vaginal opening, indicating that DHEA treatment promotes sexual maturation. In addition, the estrus phase lasted longer in the DHEA-treated rats, suggesting that their estrous cycles had been disrupted. As the DHEA-treated rats' serum luteinizing hormone levels and hypothalamic Kiss1 mRNA expression levels were decreased and their uterine weight was increased, DHEA and/or estrogen might directly affect reproductive phenotypes. While DHEA treatment caused changes in body weight and body composition in chronic testosterone-treated models in previous studies, no such changes were seen in the present study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/09513590.2016.1163672DOI Listing
September 2016

Developmental changes in the hypothalamic mRNA levels of nucleobindin-2 (NUCB2) and their sensitivity to fasting in male and female rats.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2016 Apr 15;49:46-9. Epub 2016 Jan 15.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Nesfatin-1 is a central anorectic peptide derived from the precursor protein nucleobindin-2 (NUCB2). In the present study, the changes in hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA expression and their responses to food deprivation during the neonatal to pre-pubertal period (postnatal days 10, 20, and 30) were evaluated in male and female rats. The rats' serum leptin levels were also measured because NUCB2 mRNA expression is positively regulated by leptin. In both the female and male rats, hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA expression tended to fall throughout development. Similarly, higher serum leptin levels were detected on postnatal day 10 than on postnatal days 20 and 30 in both sexes. Hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA expression was positively correlated with the serum leptin level in both the female and male rats; however, the relationship was not significant in males. The hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA levels of the fed and 24h fasted groups did not differ at any time point in either sex. On the other hand, the serum leptin levels of the 24h fasted group were significantly lower than those of the fed group at all time points in both sexes. It can be speculated that the upregulation of hypothalamic leptin activity might induce a transient increase in hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA expression during the early postnatal period (postnatal day 10) in both sexes. However, hypothalamic NUCB2 mRNA expression does not become sensitive to a negative energy balance during the neonatal to pre-pubertal period.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2016.01.003DOI Listing
April 2016

The expression of orexigenic and anorexigenic factors in middle-aged female rats that had been subjected to prenatal undernutrition.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2016 Apr 15;49:1-5. Epub 2015 Dec 15.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Tokushima University, Graduate School, Institute of Medical Sciences, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Fetal growth retardation, which affects short- and long-term fetal brain development, is associated with metabolic, hematological, and thermal disturbances, which can increase the risk of metabolic syndrome later in life. Orexigenic and anorexigenic factors regulate food intake and energy expenditure. We studied how the expression of these factors was affected by food deprivation (FD) in middle-aged female rats that had been subjected to prenatal undernutrition. Eight pregnant rats were divided into two groups, the normal nutrition (NN) (n=4) group and the undernutrition (UN) (n=4) group, which received 50% (approximately 11 g) of the daily food intake of the normal nutrition rats from day 13 of pregnancy to delivery. The pups from these dams were defined as the maternal NN (mNN) and maternal UN (mUN) groups, respectively. After weaning, all of the pups were housed and allowed ad libitum access to food and water. At the age of 6 months, both groups of pups were sub-divided into three groups. One group was allowed to consume normal amounts of food (Fed), and the other two groups were subjected to 24h or 48 h FD (n=7-8 per group). The rats' serum leptin levels and hypothalamic mRNA expression levels of various orexigenic or anorexigenic factors were measured. In both the mNN and mUN rats, the serum leptin levels of the 24h and 48 h FD groups tended to be lower than those of the Fed group, and the serum leptin levels of the 24h FD mUN rats and the Fed mUN rats differed significantly. The hypothalamic neuropeptide Y (NPY) mRNA expression levels of the 24h and 48 h FD groups were significantly higher in the mUN rats than in the mNN rats. In addition, among the mUN rats the hypothalamic NPY mRNA expression levels of the 48 h FD group were significantly higher than those of the Fed group. In both the mNN and mUN rats, prepro-orexin mRNA expression was lower in the 48 h FD group than in the corresponding Fed group. Among the mUN rats, the 48 h FD group exhibited significantly lower hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA expression than the Fed group, and a similar tendency was seen among the mNN rats. Among the mNN rats, the 24h FD group displayed significantly higher hypothalamic leptin receptor (OBRb) mRNA levels than the Fed group. However, no such differences were seen among the mUN rats. As a result, the hypothalamic OBRb mRNA expression levels of the mUN rats in the 24h and 48 h FD groups were lower than those of the corresponding mNN rat groups. These findings indicate that rats that are subjected to prenatal undernutrition exhibit upregulated expression of orexigenic factors and are more sensitive to FD in middle age, which might increase their risk of developing metabolic disorders in later life.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2015.12.002DOI Listing
April 2016

Prenatal undernutrition results in greater lipopolysaccharide-induced changes in hypothalamic TNF-α expression, but does not affect the equivalent changes in the serum levels of luteinizing hormone and testosterone, in adult male rats.

Int J Dev Neurosci 2016 Feb 7;48:80-3. Epub 2015 Dec 7.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Immune stress can cause reproductive dysfunction. Some hypothalamic factors such as pro-inflammatory cytokines play pivotal roles in reproductive disorders under immune stress conditions. Recently, it has been reported that prenatal undernutrition affects not only metabolic functions, but also the responses of physiological functions to immune stress in adulthood. In this study, the long-term effects of prenatal undernutrition on the responses of hypothalamic pro-inflammatory cytokine (interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and IL-6) expression; reproductive endocrine factors; i.e., the serum levels of gonadotropins and testosterone; and hypothalamic kisspeptin expression to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) were examined in male rats. Pregnant rats were divided into two groups; i.e., the normally nourished group and the undernourished (50% food restricted) group. The offspring of the normally nourished mothers (control) and undernourished mothers (the intrauterine growth restriction [IUGR] group) were sub-divided into saline-injected and LPS (500 μg, i.p.)-injected groups at 10 weeks of age. The rats' hypothalamic pro-inflammatory cytokine levels and serum luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone levels were measured and compared between the control and IUGR groups. The hypothalamic pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA levels of the LPS-injected rats were significantly higher than those of the saline-injected rats in both the control and IUGR groups. The changes in the hypothalamic expression level of TNF-α, but not those of the other cytokines, induced in response to LPS were more marked in the IUGR group than in the control group. On the other hand, although the serum LH and testosterone levels of the LPS-injected rats were significantly lower than those of the saline-injected rats in both the control and IUGR groups, their levels did not differ between the control and IUGR groups under the LPS-injected conditions. These results suggest that prenatal undernutrition results in more marked LPS-induced changes in hypothalamic TNF-α expression, but does not alter the effects of LPS on the serum levels of LH or testosterone, in adult male rats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2015.12.001DOI Listing
February 2016
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