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Endocrinology. 2009 Aug;150(8):3903-12. doi: 10.1210/en.2008-1141. Epub 2009 Apr 23.

Regulation and function of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP) 1 and TIMP3 in periovulatory rat granulosa cells.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Chandler Medical Center, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky 40536-0298, USA.


In the ovary, the matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and the tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase (TIMPs) have been postulated to regulate extracellular matrix remodeling associated with ovulation. In the present study, we investigated the regulatory mechanisms controlling expression of Timp1 and Timp3 mRNA in periovulatory granulosa cells. Granulosa cells were isolated from immature pregnant mare serum gonadotropin-primed (10 IU) rat ovaries and treated with human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG; 1 IU/ml). At 4 h after hCG treatment, Timp1 expression was highest and then decreased gradually over the remaining 24 h of culture. In contrast, hCG induced a biphasic increase of Timp3 expression at 2 and 16 h. The hCG stimulated expression of Timp1 and Timp3 mRNA was blocked by inhibitors of the protein kinase A (H89), protein kinase C (GF109203), and MAPK (SB2035850) pathways. To further explore Timp1 and Timp3 regulation, cells were cultured with the progesterone receptor antagonist RU486, which blocked the hCG induction of Timp3 expression, whereas the epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor AG1478 blocked the hCG stimulation of both Timp1 and Timp3 expression. The prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 inhibitor NS-398 had no effect. The potential function of TIMP3 was investigated with Timp3-specific small interfering RNA treatment. Timp3 small interfering RNA resulted in a 20% decrease in hCG-induced progesterone levels and microarray analysis revealed an increase in cytochrome P450 Cyp 17, ubiquitin conjugating enzyme E2T, and heat shock protein 70. IGF binding protein 5, stearyl-CoA desaturase, and annexin A1 were decreased. The differential regulation between Timp1 and Timp3 may correlate with their unique roles in the processes of ovulation and luteinization. For TIMP3, this may include regulating fatty acid synthesis, steroidogenesis, and protein turnover.

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