Butyl Benzyl Phthalate, an Endocrine Disrupter, Inhibits Pulsatile Luteinizing Hormone Secretion Under an Insulin-Induced Hypoglycaemic State in Ovariectomized Rats

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Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP) and bisphenol A (BPA), termed endocrine disrupters, are known to mimic oestrogen in their actions, and therefore there is concern about their effect on reproductive functions. Since it is reported that the inhibitory action of oestrogen on the pulsatile secretion of luteinizing hormone (LH) is enhanced under insulin-induced hypoglycaemia, whether this also applies to BBP and BPA was examined in the present study. In adult ovariectomized (OVX) rats, the pulsatile LH secretion 24 h after subcutaneous injection of 10 mg BBP (BBP-treated), 10 mg BPA (BPA-treated) or 100 ng 17β-oestradiol (E2-treated), all of which were dissolved in sesame oil, was not changed significantly compared to that after the injection of sesame oil only. Furthermore, in oil-treated OVX rats, the pulsatile LH secretion immediately after intravenous injection of insulin (1.0 U) was not changed compared to that after saline injection. In BBP-treated OVX rats, the injection of insulin (1.0 U) significantly decreased the number of LH pulses as in E2-treated OVX rats. The injection of insulin did not significantly affect the amplitude of LH pulses in BBP-, BPA- and E2-treated OVX rats. The results indicate that the oestrogenic action of BBP is significantly enhanced by insulin-induced hypoglycaemia and thus the pulsatile LH secretion is inhibited. We suggest that weak oestrogenic endocrine disrupters may become harmful to reproductive functions even in adult female rats, if acting under a low energy state.

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