Author(s): Caraty A, Delaleu B, Chesneau D, FabreNys C
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Abstract Preovulatory GnRH secretion in ewes, measured in portal blood and cerebrospinal fluid, starts at the time of the LH surge, approximately 4 h after the onset of estrous behavior, and lasts as long as receptivity (36-48 h), which is much longer than the LH surge. This study tested the hypothesis that the extended GnRH secretion is involved in the maintenance of receptive behavior, prolonging the initial triggering effect of E2. Ovariectomized ewes were subjected to artificial estrous cycles and infused intracerebroventricularly either with a water soluble GnRH antagonist (Teverelix, Exp 1 and 2) or GnRH (Exp 3 and 4) after preovulatory E2 challenges of various intensity. The GnRH antagonist infused for 20 h (0.5 mg/ml, flow rate 3 microl/min) following a treatment with 2 x 30-mm E2 implants for 24 h (Exp 1) significantly reduced receptivity 36-48 h post E2 compared with vehicle infusion. By contrast, when the GnRH antagonist was infused with E2 implants still present (Exp 2: E2 for 48 h, GnRH antagonist given 24-44 h after E2 insertion, n = 14) receptivity was not affected. Administration of GnRH (0.5 mg/ml, flow rate 3 microl/min) when receptivity began to decline (Exp 3: 30-48 h after a 6-h 2 x 30-mm E2 implants n = 12) resulted in significantly higher receptivity scores at 48 and 52 h post E2 in GnRH treated animals compared with vehicle treated. GnRH infusion of ewes under subthreshold E2 treatment (Exp 4: GnRH 6-24 h after implantation of 1 x 30-mm E2 for 3 h, n = 12 in a cross-over design) significantly increased their receptivity compared with vehicle administration at 18 and 24 h post E2 insertion, but receptivity remained lower than when induced by high doses of E2. Our results demonstrate for the first time that GnRH is involved in the control of receptivity in a ruminant species and suggest that in the cycling ewe the sustained preovulatory GnRH secretion plays a physiological role in extending the duration of estrous behavior. They also indicate that it is possible to dissociate a direct effect of E2 on estrous behavior from its effect via stimulation of GnRH secretion.
This article was published in Endocrinology
and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology