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      The Influence of Dehydroepiandrosterone on Early Pregnancy in Mice

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          The aim of the present report was to study the role of high levels of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) on the ovarian function and embryonic resorption during early pregnancy in BALB/c mice. Pregnant animals were injected with DHEA following both the post-implantatory (DHEA-2) and peri-implantatory (DHEA-6) models. Morphological studies of implantation sites showed 40% of embryonic resorption in the DHEA-2 group while 100% of resorption was observed in the DHEA-6 group. Serum samples of both DHEA-2 and DHEA-6 groups showed higher estradiol levels and a lower progesterone concentration than those of control groups. Ovarian prostaglandin E levels after both DHEA-2 and DHEA-6 treatments increased when compared to control groups. The antioxidant metabolite glutathione diminished during both DHEA treatments. In summary, the data presented here suggest that DHEA treatment during early pregnancy modulates the ovarian function and is responsible for embryonic resorption with different degrees depending on when it is administered.

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          Most cited references 30

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          The ovarian androgen producing cells: a review of structure/function relationships.

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            Physiological Action of Progesterone in Target Tissues

             J Graham (1997)
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              Effects of dehydroepiandrosterone on ovarian cystogenesis and immune function.

              The purpose of the present report was to study the possible relationship between ovarian functionality and the immune response during cystogenesis induced by androgenization with dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Daily injection of DHEA (6 mg/kg body weight) for 20 consecutive days induced ovarian cysts in BALB/c mice. As markers of ovarian function, serum estradiol (E) and progesterone (P) and the ovarian inmunomodulator prostaglandin E (PGE) were analyzed. In order to know how the integrity of the tissue was altered after induction of cystogenesis, the oxidative status was also evaluated. Serum E and P levels, and ovarian PGE concentration, were increased in animals with cysts compared with healthy controls. The oxidant status (quantified by malondialdehyde (MDA) formed after the breakdown of the cellular membrane by free radical mechanisms) was augmented, meanwhile the antioxidant (evaluated by the glutathione (GSH) content) diminished during the induction of cystogenesis. Both immunohistochemical and flow cytometry assays demonstrated that DHEA treatment increased the number of T lymphocytes infiltrating ovarian tissue. Therefore, while ovarian controls showed equivalent expression of CD4+ and CD8+ T cell subsets, injection of DHEA yielded a selective ovarian T cell infiltration as demonstrated by enhanced CD8+ and diminished CD4+ T lymphocyte expression. These results show that the development of cysts involves changes in ovarian function and an imbalance in the oxidant-antioxidant equilibrium. We observed also both an increased and selective T lymphocyte infiltration.

                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                September 2005
                21 September 2005
                : 12
                : 5
                : 285-292
                aCentro de Estudios Farmacológicos y Botánicos, Consejo de Investigaciones Científicas y Tecnológicas, y bFacultad de Medicina, Departamento de Farmacología, Buenos Aires, Argentina
                87106 Neuroimmunomodulation 2005;12:285–292
                © 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 7, Tables: 1, References: 40, Pages: 8
                Original Paper


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