Regulation of prepubertal dynorphin secretion in the medial basal hypothalamus of the female rat. Academic Article uri icon


  • The onset of puberty is the result of an increase in secretion of hypothalamic gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH). This action is a result of not only the development of stimulatory inputs to its release, but also the gradual decrease in inhibitory inputs that restrain release of the peptide prior to pubertal onset. Dynorphin (DYN) is one of the inhibitory inputs produced in the medial basal hypothalamus (MBH); however, little is known about what substance(s) control its prepubertal synthesis and release. Because neurokinin B (NKB) increases in the hypothalamus as puberty approaches, we considered it a candidate for such a role. An initial study investigated the acute effects of an NKB agonist, senktide, on the secretion of DYN from MBH tissues incubated in vitro. In other experiments, central injections of senktide were administered to animals for 4days then MBHs were collected for assessment of DYN synthesis or for the in vitro secretion of both DYN and GnRH. Because insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-1 has been shown to play an important role at puberty, additional animals received central injections of this peptide for 4days to assess NKB and DYN synthesis or the in vitro secretion of NKB. The results obtained show that senktide administration up-regulates the NKB receptor protein, at the same time as suppressing the DYN and its receptor. Senktide consistently suppressed DYN and elevated GnRH secretion in the same tissue incubates from both the acute and chronic studies. IGF-1 administration caused an increase in NKB protein, at the same time as decreasing DYN protein. Furthermore, the central administration of IGF-1 caused an increase in NKB release, an action blocked by the IGF-1 receptor blocker, JB-1. These results indicate that the IGF-1/NKB pathway contributes to suppressing the DYN inhibitory tone on prepubertal GnRH secretion and thus facilitates the puberty-related increase in the release of GnRH to accelerate the onset of puberty.

published proceedings

  • J Neuroendocrinol

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Dees, W. L., Hiney, J. K., & Srivastava, V. K.

citation count

  • 9

complete list of authors

  • Dees, William L||Hiney, Jill K||Srivastava, Vinod K

publication date

  • December 2019