Stimulation of growth hormone by kisspeptin antagonists in ewes

J. T. Smith, A. Roseweir, M. Millar, I. J. Clarke, R. P. Millar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Kisspeptin signalling is indispensable for fertility, stimulating gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) secretion and mediating gonadal steroid feedback on GnRH neurons. Moreover, kisspeptin neurons have been implicated in other non-reproductive neuroendocrine roles. Kisspeptin appears to also regulate growth hormone secretion but much of the data appear contradictory. We sought to clarify a potential role of kisspeptin in growth hormone (GH) regulation by examining the effect of kisspeptin antagonists on GH secretion in ewes under various physiological conditions. Our data show clear and robust increases in GH secretion following lateral ventricle or third ventricle infusion of kisspeptin antagonists p-234 and p-271 in either ovariectomized or anestrous ewes. Central infusion of kisspeptin-10 had no effect on GH secretion. To determine the level at which kisspeptin may influence GH secretion, we examined expression of the cognate kisspeptin receptor, GPR54, in pituitary cells and showed by immunocytochemistry that the majority of somatotropes express GPR54 while expression was largely negative in other pituitary cells. Overall, we have demonstrated that blocking kisspeptin signalling by antagonists stimulates GH secretion in ewes and that this is likely mediated by inhibiting endogenous kisspeptin activation of GPR54 expressed on somatotropes. The findings suggest that endogenous kisspeptin inhibits GH secretion through GPR54 expressed on somatotropes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-173
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Endocrinology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2018


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