Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Endocrinology. 2009 Apr;150(4):1731-8. doi: 10.1210/en.2008-1338. Epub 2008 Nov 26.

Hormone-activated estrogen receptors in annelid invertebrates: implications for evolution and endocrine disruption.

Author information

  • 1Center for Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon 97403, USA.

Abstract

As the primary mediators of estrogen signaling in vertebrates, estrogen receptors (ERs) play crucial roles in reproduction, development, and behavior. They are also the major mediators of endocrine disruption by xenobiotic pollutants that mimic or block estrogen action. ERs that are sensitive to estrogen and endocrine disrupters have long been thought to be restricted to vertebrates: although there is evidence for estrogen signaling in invertebrates, the only ERs studied to date, from mollusks and cephalochordates, have been insensitive to estrogen and therefore incapable of mediating estrogen signaling or disruption. To determine whether estrogen sensitivity is ancestral or a unique characteristic of vertebrate ERs, we isolated and characterized ERs from two annelids, Platynereis dumerilii and Capitella capitata, because annelids are the sister phylum to mollusks and have been shown to produce and respond to estrogens. Functional assays show that annelid ERs specifically activate transcription in response to low estrogen concentrations and bind estrogen with high affinity. Furthermore, numerous known endocrine-disrupting chemicals activate or antagonize the annelid ER. This is the first report of a hormone-activated invertebrate ER. Our results indicate that estrogen signaling via the ER is as ancient as the ancestral bilaterian animal and corroborate the estrogen sensitivity of the ancestral steroid receptor. They suggest that the taxonomic scope of endocrine disruption by xenoestrogens may be very broad and reveal how functional diversity evolved in a gene family central to animal endocrinology.

PMID:
19036877
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2659264
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Atypon Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk