Rhythmicity of luteinizing hormone secretion expressed in vitro

Hadas Lewy, Zvi Naor, Israel E. Ashkenazi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the present study we explored the possibility that the pituitary functions as an autonomous clock and is capable of generating rhythms of luteinizing hormone (LH) release independently of hypothalamic control. Pituitaries from estrous or diestrous day 1 female mice were perifused separately with Medium-199. Effluent samples were collected at 10-min intervals and assayed for LH levels. Fourier analysis and curve-fit analysis served to elucidate the presence of prominent periods whose significance was then determined by best-fit cosinor. The latter method was used to determine additional parameters for the significant rhythm. All perifused pituitaries exhibited LH release patterns that were composed of significantly long ultradian rhythms (approximately 16 and 8 h, p < 0.001). Continuous stimulation with gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) or estradiol did not alter the periods of the observed rhythms but affected other rhythm parameters. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone increased the mesor of the rhythm and estradiol increased the amplitude. The results indicate that pituitary gonadotropes are capable of producing rhythms of LH release for a long duration in vitro, in the absence of hypothalamic control. Both GnRH and estradiol affect different rhythm parameters but do not change the periods of these rhythms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)455-463
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Endocrinology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1996


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