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Endocr Regul. 2011 Jul;45(3):131-7.

7-hydroxylated derivatives of dehydroepiandrosterone as possibly related to menstrual mood change in healthy women.

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Institute of Endocrinology, Prague, Czech Republic.



Mood changes occur often in the luteal phase of menstrual cycle. Steroids modulating GABAA and NAMD receptors in the brain, namely allopregnanolone, were suggested as a factor of premenstrual syndrome. Another neurosteroid influencing the well-being is dehydroepiandrosterone. In the past decade it was shown by several authors that some dehydroepiandrosterone derivatives, especially those with 7-hydroxy- or 7-oxo group, exert a higher activity than dehydroepiandrosterone itself. It was also reasonable to see whether the levels of circulating 7-hydroxy-derivatives of dehydroepiandrosterone differ in the follicular and luteal phase of the menstrual cycle.


Steroids known to exert neuroprotective effects, namely 7α- and 7β-hydroxy-dehydroepiandrosterone, 5-androstene-3β,7α,17β-triol and 5-androstene-3β,7β,17β-triol, were determined in midfollicular and midluteal phase of the menstrual cycle of 22 healthy women with a regular menstruation cycle.


Whereas the maternal steroids, dehydroepiandrosterone and androstene-3β,17β-diol showed no significant difference between the phases of menstrual cycle, the levels of their 7-hydroxylated metabolites were significantly lower in the luteal phase.


It is suggested that the observed decrease of 7-hydroxylated metabolites during the luteal phase may be a factor related to the etiopathogenesis of mood change and neurocognitive disturbances, which are known to be more accented in that particular phase of the menstrual cycle.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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