The Effects of Kisspeptin-10 on Reproductive Hormone Release Show Sexual Dimorphism in Humans

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Abstract

Background:

Kisspeptin peptides are critical in human reproductive physiology and are potential therapies for infertility. Kisspeptin-10 stimulates gonadotropin release in both male and female rodents. However, few studies have investigated the effects of kisspeptin-10 on gonadotropin release in humans, and none have investigated the effect in women. If kisspeptin is to be useful for treating reproductive disease, its effects in both men and women must be established.

Aim:

To compare the effects of kisspeptin-10 administration on reproductive hormone release in healthy men and women.

Methods:

Intravenous bolus kisspeptin-10 was administered to men and women (n = 4–5 per group). Subcutaneous bolus and iv infusion of kisspeptin-10 was also administered to female women (n = 4–5 per group). Circulating reproductive hormones were measured.

Results:

In healthy men, serum LH and FSH were elevated after iv bolus kisspeptin-10, at doses as low as 0.3 and 1.0 nmol/kg, respectively. In healthy women during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle, no alterations in serum gonadotropins were observed after iv bolus, sc bolus, or iv infusion of kisspeptin-10 at maximal doses of 10 nmol/kg, 32 nmol/kg, and 720pmol/kg/min, respectively. In women during the preovulatory phase, serum LH and FSH were elevated after iv bolus kisspeptin-10 (10 nmol/kg).

Conclusion:

Kisspeptin-10 stimulates gonadotropin release in men as well as women during the preovulatory phase of menstrual cycle but fails to stimulate gonadotropin release in women during the follicular phase. The sexual dimorphism of the responsiveness of healthy men and women to kisspeptin-10 administration has important clinical implications for the potential of kisspeptin-10 to treat disorders of reproduction.

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