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Endocrinology. 2012 Apr;153(4):1887-97. doi: 10.1210/en.2011-1701. Epub 2012 Feb 7.

Developmental increase in kisspeptin-54 release in vivo is independent of the pubertal increase in estradiol in female rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

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  • 1Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin 53715, USA.

Abstract

Kisspeptin (KP) signaling has been proposed as an important regulator in the mechanism of puberty. In this study, to determine the role of KP in puberty, we assessed the in vivo release pattern of KP-54 from the basal hypothalamus/stalk-median eminence in prepubertal and pubertal ovarian-intact female rhesus monkeys. We found that there was a developmental increase in mean KP-54 release, pulse frequency, and pulse amplitude, which is parallel to the developmental changes in GnRH release that we previously reported. Moreover, a nocturnal increase in KP-54 release becomes prominent after the onset of puberty. Because the pubertal increase in GnRH release occurs independent of the pubertal increase in circulating gonadal steroids, we further examined whether ovariectomy (OVX) modifies the release pattern of KP-54. Results show that OVX in pubertal monkeys enhanced mean KP-54 release and pulse amplitude but not pulse frequency, whereas OVX did not alter the release pattern of KP-54 in prepubertal monkeys. Estradiol replacement in OVX pubertal monkeys suppressed mean KP-54 release and pulse amplitude but not pulse frequency. Estradiol replacement in OVX prepubertal monkeys did not alter the KP-54 release pattern. Collectively these results suggest that the pubertal increase in KP release occurs independent of the pubertal increase in circulating estradiol. Nevertheless, the pubertal increase in KP release is not likely responsible for the initiation of the pubertal increase in GnRH release. Rather, after puberty onset, the increase in KP release contributes to further increase GnRH release during the progression of puberty.

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