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Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2012 Dec 13;3:162. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2012.00162. eCollection 2012.

Mechanisms underlying the tissue-specific and regulated activity of the Gnrhr promoter in mammals.

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Physiologie de l'Axe Gonadotrope, Biologie Fonctionnelle et Adaptative, EAC CNRS 4413, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Université Paris Diderot-Paris 7 Paris, France.


The GnRH receptor (GnRHR) plays a central role in the development and maintenance of reproductive function in mammals. Following stimulation by GnRH originating from the hypothalamus, GnRHR triggers multiple signaling events that ultimately stimulate the synthesis and the periodic release of the gonadotropins, luteinizing-stimulating hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormones (FSH) which, in turn, regulate gonadal functions including steroidogenesis and gametogenesis. The concentration of GnRHR at the cell surface is essential for the amplitude and the specificity of gonadotrope responsiveness. The number of GnRHR is submitted to strong regulatory control during pituitary development, estrous cycle, pregnancy, lactation, or after gonadectomy. These modulations take place, at least in part, at the transcriptional level. To analyze this facet of the reproductive function, the 5' regulatory sequences of the gene encoding the GnRHR have been isolated and characterized through in vitro and in vivo approaches. This review summarizes results obtained with the mouse, rat, human, and ovine promoters either by transient transfection assays or by means of transgenic mice.


GnRH receptor; gonadotrope cell lines; homeodomain proteins; promoter regions; steroidogenic factor 1; transcription; transgenic mice

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