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      A synthetic kisspeptin analog that triggers ovulation and advances puberty

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          Abstract

          The neuropeptide kisspeptin and its receptor, KiSS1R, govern the reproductive timeline of mammals by triggering puberty onset and promoting ovulation by stimulating gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) secretion. To overcome the drawback of kisspeptin short half-life we designed kisspeptin analogs combining original modifications, triazole peptidomimetic and albumin binding motif, to reduce proteolytic degradation and to slow down renal clearance, respectively. These analogs showed improved in vitro potency and dramatically enhanced pharmacodynamics. When injected intramuscularly into ewes (15 nmol/ewe) primed with a progestogen, the best analog (compound 6, C6) induced synchronized ovulations in both breeding and non-breeding seasons. Ovulations were fertile as demonstrated by the delivery of lambs at term. C6 was also fully active in both female and male mice but was completely inactive in KiSS1R KO mice. Electrophysiological recordings of GnRH neurons from brain slices of GnRH-GFP mice indicated that C6 exerted a direct excitatory action on GnRH neurons. Finally, in prepubertal female mice daily injections (0.3 nmol/mouse) for five days significantly advanced puberty. C6 ability to trigger ovulation and advance puberty demonstrates that kisspeptin analogs may find application in the management of livestock reproduction and opens new possibilities for the treatment of reproductive disorders in humans.

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          Most cited references 36

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          Kisspeptin Activation of Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone Neurons and Regulation of KiSS-1 mRNA in the Male Rat

          The KiSS-1 gene codes for a family of neuropeptides called kisspeptins which bind to the G-protein-coupled receptor GPR54. To assess the possible effects of kisspeptins on gonadotropin secretion, we injected kisspeptin-52 into the lateral cerebral ventricles of adult male rats and found that kisspeptin-52 increased the serum levels of luteinizing hormone (p < 0.05). To determine whether the kisspeptin-52-induced stimulation of luteinizing hormone secretion was mediated by gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), we pretreated adult male rats with a GnRH antagonist (acyline), then challenged the animals with intracerebroventricularly administered kisspeptin-52. The GnRH antagonist blocked the kisspeptin-52-induced increase in luteinizing hormone. To examine whether kisspeptins stimulate transcriptional activity in GnRH neurons, we administered kisspeptin-52 intracerebroventricularly and found by immunocytochemistry that 86% of the GnRH neurons coexpressed Fos 2 h after the kisspeptin-52 challenge, whereas fewer than 1% of the GnRH neurons expressed Fos following injection of the vehicle alone (p < 0.001). To assess whether kisspeptins can directly act on GnRH neurons, we used double-label in situ hybridization and found that 77% of the GnRH neurons coexpress GPR54 mRNA. Finally, to determine whether KiSS-1 gene expression is regulated by gonadal hormones, we measured KiSS-1 mRNA levels by single-label in situ hybridization in intact and castrated males and found significantly higher levels in the arcuate nucleus of castrates. These results demonstrate that GnRH neurons are direct targets for regulation by kisspeptins and that KiSS-1 mRNA is regulated by gonadal hormones, suggesting that KiSS-1 neurons play an important role in the feedback regulation of gonadotropin secretion.
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            Peripheral administration of metastin induces marked gonadotropin release and ovulation in the rat.

            Metastin is a novel peptide that has been isolated from the human placenta as the cognate ligand of the G-protein-coupled receptor OT7T175 (or GPR54). However, its physiological functions have not yet been fully investigated. In the present study, we show that subcutaneous administration of metastin increased the plasma levels of gonadotropins (follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone) and induced ovulation in prepubertal female rats that had been pretreated with pregnant mare serum gonadotropin to induce follicle maturation. Furthermore, metastin administration drastically increased the plasma levels of gonadotropins in male rats. This action was abolished by pretreatment with a GnRH antagonist, and was accompanied by induction of c-Fos immunoreactivity in GnRH neurons. These results suggest that s.c. administered metastin induces the release of gonadotropin via activation of the hypothalamic GnRH neurons.
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              GABA- and glutamate-activated channels in green fluorescent protein-tagged gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons in transgenic mice.

              Mice were generated expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) promoter. Green fluorescence was observed in, and restricted to, GnRH-immunopositive neuronal somata in the olfactory bulb, ganglion terminale, septal nuclei, diagonal band of Broca (DBB), preoptic area (POA), and caudal hypothalamus, as well as GnRH neuronal dendrites and axons, including axon terminals in the median eminence and organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT). Whole-cell recordings from GFP-expressing GnRH neurons in the OVLT-POA-DBB region revealed a firing pattern among GFP-expressing GnRH neurons distinct from that of nonfluorescent neurons. Nucleated patches of GFP-expressing GnRH neurons exhibited pronounced responses to fast application of GABA and smaller responses to L-glutamate and AMPA. One-fifth of the nucleated patches responded to NMDA. The GABA-A, AMPA, and NMDA receptor channels on GnRH neurons mediating these responses may play a role in the modulation of GnRH secretory oscillations.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Sci Rep
                Sci Rep
                Scientific Reports
                Nature Publishing Group
                2045-2322
                01 June 2016
                2016
                : 6
                Affiliations
                [1 ]UMR Physiologie de la Reproduction et des Comportements (INRA, UMR85; CNRS, UMR7247, Université François Rabelais Tours, IFCE) F-37380 Nouzilly , France
                [2 ]Centre de Biophysique Moléculaire (CNRS UPR 4301) F-45071 Orléans cedex 2 , France
                [3 ]Centre for Neuroendocrinology, PO Box 913, University of Otago School of Medical Sciences Dunedin 9054 , New Zealand
                Author notes
                Article
                srep26908
                10.1038/srep26908
                4887910
                27245315
                Copyright © 2016, Macmillan Publishers Limited

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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