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Age differentially influences estrogen receptor-alpha (ERalpha) and estrogen receptor-beta (ERbeta) gene expression in specific regions of the rat brain.
Wilson ME; Rosewell KL; Kashon ML; Shughrue PJ; Merchenthaler I; Wise PM
Mech Ageing Dev 2002 Mar; 123(6):593-601
Estradiol's ability to influence neurochemical events that are critical to female reproductive cyclicity and behavior decreases with age. We tested the hypothesis that decreases in estrogen receptor-alpha (ERalpha) and/or ERbeta mRNA explain the brain's declining responsiveness to estradiol. We assessed ERalpha and ERbeta mRNA levels in intact and ovariectomized estradiol-treated rats. ERbeta mRNA was detected in several brain regions and decreased by middle-age in the cerebral cortex and supraoptic nucleus of estradiol-treated rats. ERbeta mRNA levels exhibited a diurnal rhythm in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of young and middle-aged rats and this rhythm was blunted in old rats. We examined ERalpha mRNA in the periventricular preoptic, medial preoptic, ventromedial and arcuate nuclei, and it was decreased only in the periventricular preoptic nucleus of the old rats. In summary, the expression of ERalpha and ERbeta mRNAs is differentially modulated in the aging brain and changes are region specific.
Fertility; Reproductive-effects; Reproductive-system; Reproduction; Estrogenic-hormones; Animal-studies; Age-factors; Age-groups; Brain-function
Departmen of Physiology, College of Medicine, University of Kentucky, 800 Rose Street, Lexington, KY 40536, USA
Issue of Publication
Mechanisms of Ageing and Development
Page last reviewed: March 3, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division