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Toxicol Sci. 2009 Jul;110(1):95-106. doi: 10.1093/toxsci/kfp089. Epub 2009 May 4.

Effect of the methoxychlor metabolite HPTE on the rat ovarian granulosa cell transcriptome in vitro.

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Joint Graduate Program in Toxicology, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901, USA.


Ovarian granulosa cells play a central role in steroidogenesis, which is critical for female reproduction. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) promotes cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP)-mediated signaling to regulate granulosa cell steroidogenesis. We have shown previously that 2,2-bis-(p-hydroxyphenyl)-1,1,1-trichloroethane (HPTE) inhibits FSH- and dibutyryl cAMP-stimulated steroidogenesis and affects the messenger RNA levels of steroidogenic pathway enzymes in rat granulosa cells. However, HPTE showed a differential effect in FSH- and cAMP-stimulated cells in that HPTE more completely blocked FSH- when compared to cAMP-driven steroidogenesis. The objective of this study was to analyze the effects of HPTE on global gene expression profiles in untreated granulosa cells and those challenged with FSH or cAMP. Granulosa cells from immature rats were cultured with 0, 1, 5, or 10 microM HPTE in the presence or absence of either 3 ng FSH/ml or 1mM cAMP for 48 h. Total RNA was isolated for real-time quantitative PCR and microarray analysis using the GeneChip Rat Genome 230 2.0 and ArrayAssist Microarray Suite. An investigation of changes in gene expression across all HPTE treatments showed that HPTE altered more genes in FSH- (approximately 670 genes) than in cAMP-stimulated cells (approximately 366 genes). Analysis confirmed that HPTE more effectively inhibited FSH- than cAMP-induced steroid pathway gene expression and steroidogenesis. Furthermore, expression patterns of novel genes regulating signal transduction, transport, cell cycle, adhesion, differentiation, motility and growth, apoptosis, development, and metabolism were all altered by HPTE. This study further established that HPTE exerts differential effects within the granulosa cell steroidogenic pathway and revealed that these effects include broader changes in gene expression.

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