Actions of ethanol on hypothalamic and pituitary hormones in prepubertal female rats.
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To determine the effects of prepubertal ethanol (ETOH) exposure on hypothalamic and pituitary hormones known to be involved in the onset of female puberty, we have chronically exposed female rats to either a liquid-diet containing ETOH or an isocaloric control liquid-diet. An additional set of controls consisted of animals maintained on Lab Chow, and water provided ad lib. Our results indicate that the feeding regimen employed produced no differences with regard to body and reproductive organ weights, as well as any of the hormones measured between the two control groups. Conversely, ETOH-treated animals showed significantly lower body and reproductive organ weights than the control animals and although no differences were detected between ETOH-treated and control animals with regard to the hypothalamic content of somatostatin (SRIF), there was a significant increase in the hypothalamic content of growth hormone releasing hormone (GHRH), with a concomitant and significant decrease in the serum concentration of growth hormone (GH). Furthermore, the ETOH-treated animals showed a significant increase in the hypothalamic content of luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH) with a significant decrease in the serum concentration of luteinizing hormone (LH), but not follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). These results demonstrate for the first time that chronic, prepubertal ETOH administration alters the concentrations of specific hypothalamic and pituitary hormones which are known to be involved in the female pubertal process.
author list (cited authors)
Dees, W. L., Skelley, C. W., Hiney, J. K., & Johnston, C. A.
complete list of authors
Dees, WL||Skelley, CW||Hiney, JK||Johnston, CA