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Rescue of preimplantatory egg development and embryo implantation in prolactin receptor-deficient mice after progesterone administration


PRL, a hormone secreted essentially by the pituitary and other extrapituitary sources such as decidua, has been attributed regulatory roles in reproduction and cell growth in mammals. These effects are mediated by a membrane PRL receptor belonging to the cytokine receptor superfamily. Null mutation of the PRL receptor gene leads to female sterility due to a severely compromised preimplantation development and a complete failure of the implantation of the few embryos reaching the blastocyst stage, strongly implicating PRL in the maternal control of implantation. We measured the hormonal status of -/- mice, which confirmed that the corpus luteum is unable to produce progesterone. Progesterone administration to -/- mice completely rescued the development of preimplantatory eggs and embryo implantation. Pregnancy could be maintained to 19.5 days postcoitum, with about 22% of resulting embryos reaching adulthood. Although progesterone and perhaps PRL appear to facilitate mouse preembryo development throughout the preimplantation stages, other factors as well as a possible direct effect of PRL on the uterus are probably necessary to fully maintain pregnancy. Finally, reduced ductal side-branching in the mammary gland can be rescued by progesterone treatment, but females exhibit reduced alveolar formation. Our model establishes the PRL receptor as a key regulator of reproduction and provides novel insights into the function of lactogenic hormones and their receptor.

Type Journal
ISBN 0013-7227 (Print)
Authors Binart, N.;Helloco, C.;Ormandy, C. J.;Barra, J.;Clement-Lacroix, P.;Baran, N.;Kelly, P. A. :
Garvan Authors Prof Chris Ormandy
Published Date 2000-01-01 00:00:00
Published Volume 141
Published Issue 7
Published Pages 2691-7
Status Published In-print