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Endocrinology. 1997 Aug;138(8):3540-7.

Elevated luteinizing hormone in prepubertal transgenic mice causes hyperandrogenemia, precocious puberty, and substantial ovarian pathology.

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Department of Pharmacology, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio 44106, USA.


In women, chronically elevated androgens have been associated with polycystic ovarian syndrome and infertility. Recently, we described transgenic mice with elevated serum LH secondary to targeted expression of a transgene encoding a chimeric LH beta-subunit. Mature transgenic females exhibit elevated androgens, anovulation, and a range of ovarian phenotypes including cysts, widespread luteinization, and tumors. In the present study we have examined serum levels of LH and testosterone and the concurrent development of the reproductive system in prepubertal mice. Serum LH in prepubertal females was elevated despite increased serum testosterone and estradiol, indicating a relative insensitivity to steroid negative feedback. Elevated serum LH and hyperandrogenemia resulted in accelerated vaginal opening and ovarian follicular development in transgenic females. Precocious antral follicle formation and conspicuous hypertrophy of the theca-interstitium preceded the development of large cysts with marked hemorrhage. Based on these studies we conclude that chronic prepubertal elevation of serum LH results in gonadotropin-dependent hyperandrogenemia, leading to abnormal sexual development and significant ovarian pathology.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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