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      Demonstration of steroid hormone receptors and steroid action in primary cultures of rat glial cells

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          Primary cultures of rat glial cells were established from newborn rat forebrains. A mixed population of oligodendrocytes and astrocytes was obtained, as confirmed by indirect immunofluorescence staining with specific markers for each cell type. Receptors were measured 3 weeks after primary culture in glial cells cultured in the presence or not of 50 nM estradiol and we have identified progesterone, glucocorticoid, estrogen, and androgen receptors (PR, GR, ER and AR), but only PR was inducible by the estrogen treatment. This estrogen-induction of PR was more dramatic in glial cells derived from female offsprings than from males, as measured by binding studies and by immunohistochemical techniques with the KC 146 anti-PR monoclonal antibody. The antiestrogen tamoxifen inhibited the estrogen induction, but had no effect by itself on PR concentration. Specific binding sites for PR, GR, ER and AR were measured by whole cell assays after labeling cells with, respectively, [3H]R5020, [3H]dexamethasone, [3H]OH-tamoxifen or [3H]R1881. PR and GR were also analyzed by ultracentrifugation and after exposure of cells to agonists, both receptors were recovered from cytosol as a 9S form, and from the nuclear high-salt, tungstate ions-containing fraction as a 4-6S form. In contrast, when the antiprogestin- and antiglucocorticosteroid RU486 was used as a ligand, a non-activated 8.5S receptor complex was found for both receptors in this nuclear fraction. The 8.5S complex of the GR was further analyzed in the presence of specific antibodies and, in addition to GR, the presence of the heat shock protein hsp90 and of a 59 kDa protein was found. During primary culture, the effects of progesterone (P) and estradiol (E2) were tested on glial cell multiplication, morphology and differentiation. Cell growth was inhibited by P and stimulated by E2. Both hormones induced dramatic morphologic changes in oligodendrocytes and astrocytes and increased synthesis of the myelin basic protein in oligodendrocytes and of the glial fibrillary acidic protein in astrocytes.

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          The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
          The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
          Elsevier BV
          March 1992
          March 1992
          : 41
          : 3-8
          : 621-631
          © 1992


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