Development-related effects of recombinant activin on steroid synthesis in rat granulosa cells.

Abstract:

:Activin is structurally related to polypeptide growth factors such as transforming-growth factor-beta, which may have paracrine and/or autocrine functions in the ovaries. We have investigated the action of activin on granulosa cell steroidogenesis in vitro in relation to preovulatory follicular development in vivo. Estrogen-primed immature female rats received no other treatment (nondifferentiated granulosa cells), treatment with ovine (o) FSH (differentiated granulosa cells), or treatment with oFSH followed by human (h) CG (preovulatory granulosa cells) to stimulate preovulatory follicular development. Granulosa cells were isolated and cultured in the presence and absence of recombinant human activin-A using serum-free medium supplemented with 1.0 microM testosterone as an aromatase substrate and hFSH, hLH, forskolin, or 8-bromo-cAMP to stimulate steroid synthesis in vitro. After 48 h, medium was collected for measurement of estradiol (aromatase activity), progesterone, and cAMP. Basal steroid synthesis in nondifferentiated granulosa cells was unaffected by activin, but both aromatase activity and progesterone production induced by treatment with FSH in vitro were dosedependently enhanced up to 10-fold by the presence of activin. FSH-stimulated cAMP production was not measurably altered by activin; however, steroidogenesis induced by forskolin or 8-bromo-cAMP was significantly enhanced by the factor. Thus the effect of activin on steroidogenesis includes action at a subcellular level(s) distal to the production of cAMP. After gonadotropin treatment in vivo, granulosa cell aromatase activity and progesterone production showed divergent responses to activin in vitro. Basal-, FSH-, and LH-stimulated aromatase activity were all enhanced by activin in cultures of differentiated and preovulatory granulosa cells. However, whereas basal progesterone production was stimulated by activin in cultures of differentiated granulosa cells, in preovulatory granulosa cells it was inhibited. Moreover, in vitro stimulation of progesterone production by treatment of both differentiated and preovulatory granulosa cells with FSH or LH was suppressed by the presence of activin. Thus rat granulosa cells display development-related steroidogenic responses to activin, aromatase production becoming enhanced and progesterone production suppressed as follicular maturation progresses. These results further implicate activin as a local modulator of granulosa cell steroid synthesis in the ovaries, although its functional significance has yet to be established.

journal_name

Endocrinology

journal_title

Endocrinology

authors

Miró F,Smyth CD,Hillier SG

doi

10.1210/endo-129-6-3388

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

1991-12-01 00:00:00

pages

3388-94

issue

6

eissn

0013-7227

issn

1945-7170

journal_volume

129

pub_type

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