The effects of glucocorticoids and progesterone on hormone-responsive human breast cancer in long-term tissue culture.
Glucocorticoids, at physiological concentration, inhibit cell division and thymidine incorporation in three lines of human breast cancer maintained in long-term tissue culture. At steroid concentrations sufficient to inhibit thymidine incorporation 50%, little or no effect is seen on protein synthesis 48 hr after hormone addition. All three of these lines are shown to have glucocorticoid receptors demonstrable by competitive protein binding assays. Receptors are extensively characterized in one line by sucrose density gradient analysis and binding specificity studies. Good correlation between receptor-binding specificity and biological activity is found except for progesterone, which binds to glucocorticoid receptor but is noninhibitory. Cross-competition and quantification studies demonstrate a separate receptor for progesterone. This receptor has limited binding specificities restricted largely to progestational agents, whereas the glucocorticoid receptor bound both glucocorticoids and progesterone. Two other human breast cancer lines neither contain glucocorticoid receptor nor are inhibited by glucocorticoids. It is concluded that in some cases glucocorticoids can directly limit growth in human breast cancer in vitro without requiring alterations in other trophic hormones. (+info)
Progesterone inhibits estrogen-induced cyclin D1 and cdk4 nuclear translocation, cyclin E- and cyclin A-cdk2 kinase activation, and cell proliferation in uterine epithelial cells in mice.
The response of the uterine epithelium to female sex steroid hormones provides an excellent model to study cell proliferation in vivo since both stimulation and inhibition of cell proliferation can be studied. Thus, when administered to ovariectomized adult mice 17beta-estradiol (E2) stimulates a synchronized wave of DNA synthesis and cell division in the epithelial cells, while pretreatment with progesterone (P4) completely inhibits this E2-induced cell proliferation. Using a simple method to isolate the uterine epithelium with high purity, we have shown that E2 treatment induces a relocalization of cyclin D1 and, to a lesser extent, cdk4 from the cytoplasm into the nucleus and results in the orderly activation of cyclin E- and cyclin A-cdk2 kinases and hyperphosphorylation of pRb and p107. P4 pretreatment did not alter overall levels of cyclin D1, cdk4, or cdk6 nor their associated kinase activities but instead inhibited the E2-induced nuclear localization of cyclin D1 to below the control level and, to a lesser extent, nuclear cdk4 levels, with a consequent inhibition of pRb and p107 phosphorylation. In addition, it abrogated E2-induced cyclin E-cdk2 activation by dephosphorylation of cdk2, followed by inhibition of cyclin A expression and consequently of cyclin A-cdk2 kinase activity and further inhibition of phosphorylation of pRb and p107. P4 is used therapeutically to oppose the effect of E2 during hormone replacement therapy and in the treatment of uterine adenocarcinoma. This study showing a novel mechanism of cell cycle inhibition by P4 may provide the basis for the development of new antiestrogens. (+info)
OBJECTIVE: To test the hypothesis that progesterone alters sphincter of Oddi and gallbladder function and, therefore, bile flow dynamics. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA: Although the effects of progesterone on the biliary tract have been implicated in the increased incidence of gallstones among women, the specific effects of prolonged elevation of progesterone levels, such as occurs with contraceptive progesterone implants and during pregnancy, on the sphincter of Oddi and biliary flow dynamics are still incompletely understood. METHODS: Adult female prairie dogs were randomly assigned to receive subcutaneous implants containing either progesterone or inactive pellet matrix only. Hepatic bile partitioning and gallbladder emptying were determined 14 days later using 99mTc-Mebrofenin cholescintigraphy. RESULTS: Significantly less hepatic bile partitioned into the gallbladder in progesterone-treated than in control animals. The gallbladder ejection fraction was significantly reduced from 73+/-6% in controls to 59+/-3% in the progesterone-treated animals. The rate of gallbladder emptying was significantly reduced from 3.6+/-0.3%/minute to 2.9+/-0.1%/minute. CONCLUSIONS: Progesterone administered as subcutaneous implants alters partitioning of hepatic bile between gallbladder and small intestine and, therefore, gallbladder filling. Progesterone also significantly impairs gallbladder emptying in response to cholecystokinin. The effects of progesterone on the sphincter of Oddi and the gallbladder may contribute to the greater prevalence of gallstones and biliary motility disorders among women. (+info)
Delay of preterm delivery in sheep by omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturates.
A positive correlation has been shown between dietary intake of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids in late pregnancy and gestation length in pregnant women and experimental animals. To determine whether omega-3 fatty acids have an effect on preterm labor in sheep, a fish oil concentrate emulsion was continuously infused to six pregnant ewes from 124 days gestational age. At 125 days, betamethasone was administered to the fetus to produce preterm labor. Both the onset of labor and the time of delivery were delayed by the fish oil emulsion. Two of the omega-3-infused ewes reverted from contractions to nonlabor, an effect never previously observed for experimental glucocorticoid-induced preterm labor in sheep. Maternal plasma estradiol and maternal and fetal prostaglandin E2 rose in control ewes but not in those infused with omega-3 fatty acid. The ability of omega-3 fatty acids to delay premature delivery in sheep indicates their possible use as tocolytics in humans. Premature labor is the major cause of neonatal death and long-term disability, and these studies present information that may lead to a novel therapeutic regimen for the prevention of preterm delivery in human pregnancy. (+info)
Endocrine biomarkers of early fetal loss in cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis) following exposure to dioxin.
This study examines the endocrine alterations associated with early fetal loss (EFL) induced by an environmental toxin, TCDD (2,3,7, 8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin), in the cynomolgus macaque, a well-documented reproductive/developmental model for humans. Females were administered single doses of 1, 2, and 4 microgram/kg TCDD (n = 4 per dose group) on gestational day (GD) 12. Urinary estrogen metabolites (estrone conjugates) were monitored to establish the day of ovulation, and serum hormones (estradiol, progesterone, chorionic gonadotropin, relaxin) were measured to assess ovarian and placental endocrine status before and after treatment. EFL occurred between GDs 22 and 32 in 10 of the 12 animals treated with TCDD. The primary endocrine alterations associated with TCDD treatment were significant decreases in serum estradiol and bioactive chorionic gonadotropin concentrations (p < 0.02). Less pronounced decreases in serum progesterone (p = 0.10) and relaxin (p < 0.08) also followed TCDD treatment. In contrast, immunoreactive chorionic gonadotropin concentrations were not reduced by TCDD exposure at any level, indicating that TCDD targets specific components of the chorionic gonadotropin synthesis machinery within the trophoblast to alter the functional capacity of the hormone. These data demonstrate the value of endocrine biomarkers in identifying a toxic exposure to primate pregnancy many days before direct signs of reproductive toxicity were apparent. The increased EFL that occurred after exposure to TCDD might reflect a toxic response initially mediated via endocrine imbalance, leading to placental insufficiency, compromised embryonic circulation, and subsequent EFL. (+info)
Steroid regulation of retinol-binding protein in the ovine oviduct.
Two studies were conducted to identify retinol-binding protein (RBP) expression in the ovine oviduct and to determine the role of ovarian steroids in its regulation. Ewes were salpingectomized on Days 1, 5, or 10 of their respective estrous cycles, and oviducts were homogenized for RNA analysis, fixed for immunocytochemistry (ICC), or cultured for 24 h for protein analysis. ICC localized RBP to the epithelium of all oviducts. RBP synthesis was demonstrated by immunoprecipitation of radiolabeled RBP from the medium of oviductal explant cultures. Explant culture medium from oviducts harvested on Day 1 contained significantly more RBP than medium from oviducts collected on Days 5 or 10. Slot-blot analysis demonstrated that steady-state RBP mRNA levels were significantly higher on Day 1 than Day 5 or 10. In the second experiment, ovariectomized ewes were treated with estradiol-17beta (E2), progesterone (P4), E2+P4 (E2+P4), or vehicle control, and oviducts were analyzed as above. P4 alone or in combination with E2 significantly reduced steady-state RBP mRNA levels compared to those in E2-treated animals. Oviductal explants from E2- and E2+P4-treated animals released 3- to 5-fold more RBP into the medium than control and P4 treatments as determined by ELISA. RBP synthesis of metabolically labeled RBP was increased by E2 and E2+P4 treatments. This study demonstrates that P4 applied on an estradiol background negatively regulates RBP gene expression in the oviduct whereas estradiol appears to stimulate RBP synthesis and secretion. (+info)
Luteinizing hormone inhibits conversion of pregnenolone to progesterone in luteal cells from rats on day 19 of pregnancy.
We have previously reported that intrabursal ovarian administration of LH at the end of pregnancy in rats induces a decrease in luteal progesterone (P4) synthesis and an increase in P4 metabolism. However, whether this local luteolytic effect of LH is exerted directly on luteal cells or on other structures, such as follicular or stromal cells, to modify luteal function is unknown. The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of LH on isolated luteal cells obtained on Day 19 of pregnancy. Incubation of luteal cells with 1, 10, 100, or 1000 ng/ml of ovine LH (oLH) for 6 h did not modify basal P4 production. The addition to the culture medium of 22(R)-hydroxycholesterol (22R-HC, 10 microgram/ml), a membrane-permeable P4 precursor, or pregnenolone (10(-2) microM) induced a significant increase in P4 accumulation in the medium in relation to the control value. When luteal cells were preincubated for 2 h with oLH, a significant (p < 0.01) reduction in the 22R-HC- or pregnenolone-stimulated P4 accumulation was observed. Incubation of luteal cells with dibutyryl cAMP (1 mM, a cAMP analogue) plus isobutylmethylxanthine (1 mM, a phosphodiesterase inhibitor) also inhibited pregnenolone-stimulated P4 accumulation. Incubation with an inositol triphosphate synthesis inhibitor, neomycin (1 mM), or an inhibitor of intracellular Ca2+ mobilization, (8,9-N, N-diethylamino)octyl-3,4,5-trimethoxybenzoate (1 mM), did not prevent the decrease in pregnenolone-stimulated P4 secretion induced by oLH. It was concluded that the luteolytic action of LH in late pregnancy is due, at least in part, to a direct action on the luteal cells and that an increase in intracellular cAMP level might mediate this effect. (+info)
Identification and cloning of xp95, a putative signal transduction protein in Xenopus oocytes.
A 95-kDa protein in Xenopus oocytes, Xp95, was shown to be phosphorylated from the first through the second meiotic divisions during progesterone-induced oocyte maturation. Xp95 was purified and cloned. The Xp95 protein sequence exhibited homology to mouse Rhophilin, budding yeast Bro1, and Aspergillus PalA, all of which are implicated in signal transduction. It also contained three conserved features including seven conserved tyrosines, a phosphorylation consensus sequence for the Src family of tyrosine kinases, and a proline-rich domain near the C terminus that contains multiple SH3 domain-binding motifs. We showed the following: 1) that both Xp95 isolated from Xenopus oocytes and a synthetic peptide containing the Src phosphorylation consensus sequence of Xp95 were phosphorylated in vitro by Src kinase and to a lesser extent by Fyn kinase; 2) Xp95 from Xenopus oocytes or eggs was recognized by an anti-phosphotyrosine antibody, and the relative abundance of tyrosine-phosphorylated Xp95 increased during oocyte maturation; and 3) microinjection of deregulated Src mRNA into Xenopus oocytes increased the abundance of tyrosine-phosphorylated Xp95. These results suggest that Xp95 is an element in a tyrosine kinase signaling pathway that may be involved in progesterone-induced Xenopus oocyte maturation. (+info)