Influence of estradiol on insulin-like growth factor-1-induced luteinizing hormone secretion.
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Several studies suggest an interrelationship between estradiol (E2) and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) at the hypothalamic level. The present study was designed to discern if the capability of IGF-1 to release LH and influence the timing of female puberty is influenced by E2. Twenty-eight-day-old female rats were ovariectomized (OVEX), then implanted with a third ventricular (3V) cannula. Two weeks later, these animals received subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of oil, or either one or two injections of E2 in the form of estradiol benzoate (1 microg). Forty-eight hours later, four basal blood samples were drawn then the animals received IGF-1 (200 ng) or saline via the 3V and four more blood samples were taken. Results indicated that E2 replacement lowered basal LH levels and IGF-1 induced a significant LH release in only animals that had E2 levels above 20 pg/ml. These levels of E2 were also associated with increases (p<0.05) in the expression of both IGF-1 receptor (IGF-1R) mRNA and protein. In order to further support the hypothesis that the action of IGF-1 at the time of puberty is influenced by E2, 24-day-old intact female rats received s.c. injection of sesame oil or 0.1 microg of E2. The next day, the E2-treated animals also received twice daily s.c. injections of either IGF-1 (500 ng) or saline until vaginal opening (VO) occurred. The animals that received E2 plus IGF-1 showed VO at 31.1 days, which was 2.5 days earlier (p<0.01) than E2-treated animals and 4 days earlier (p<0.001) than IGF-1-treated and saline control animals. Taken together, these results indicate that the hypothalamic action of IGF-1 to stimulate LH release and advance female pubertal development is dependent upon the influence of E2.