Involvement of ERK1/2 signaling pathway in atrazine action on FSH-stimulated LHR and CYP19A1 expression in rat granulosa cells

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Worldwide used herbicide atrazine is linked to reproductive dysfunction in females. In this study, we investigated the effects and the mechanism of atrazine action in the ovary using a primary culture of immature granulosa cells. In granulosa cells, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) activates both cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) and extracellular-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) cascades, with cAMP pathway being more important for luteinizing hormone receptor (LHR) and aromatase (CYP19A1) mRNA expression. We report that 48 h after atrazine exposure the FSH-stimulated LHR and CYP19A1 mRNA expression and estradiol synthesis were decreased, with LHR mRNA being more sensitive to atrazine than CYP19A1 mRNA. Inadequate acquisition of LHR in the FSH-stimulated and atrazine-exposed granulosa cells renders human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) ineffective to stimulate amphiregulin (Areg), epiregulin (Ereg), and progesterone receptor (Pgr) mRNA expression, suggesting anti-ovulatory effect of atrazine. To dissect the signaling cascade involved in atrazine action in granulosa cells, we used U0126, a pharmacological inhibitor of ERK1/2. U0126 prevents atrazine-induced decrease in LHR and CYP19A1 mRNA levels and estradiol production in the FSH-stimulated granulosa cells. ERK1/2 inactivation restores the ability of hCG to induce expression of the ovulatory genes in atrazine-exposed granulosa cells. Cell-based ELISA assay revealed that atrazine does not change the FSH-stimulated ERK1/2 phosphorylation in granulosa cells. The results from this study reveal that atrazine does not affect but requires ERK1/2 phosphorylation to cause decrease in the FSH-induced LHR and CYP19A1 mRNA levels and estradiol production in immature granulosa cells, thus compromising ovulation and female fertility.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles