A model of gonadotropin regulation during the menstrual cycle in women: qualitative features

Environ Health Perspect. 2000 Oct;108 Suppl 5:873-81. doi: 10.1289/ehp.00108s5873.

Abstract

Increasing concerns that environmental contaminants may disrupt the endocrine system require development of mathematical tools to predict the potential for such compounds to significantly alter human endocrine function. The endocrine system is largely self-regulating, compensating for moderate changes in dietary phytoestrogens (e.g., in soy products) and normal variations in physiology. However, severe changes in dietary or oral exposures or in health status (e.g., anorexia), can completely disrupt the menstrual cycle in women. Thus, risk assessment tools should account for normal regulation and its limits. We present a mathematical model for the synthesis and release of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in women as a function of estrogen, progesterone, and inhibin blood levels. The model reproduces the time courses of LH and FSH during the menstrual cycle and correctly predicts observed effects of administered estrogen and progesterone on LH and FSH during clinical studies. The model should be useful for predicting effects of hormonally active substances, both in the pharmaceutical sciences and in toxicology and risk assessment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods
  • Estrogens / physiology
  • Female
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / physiology*
  • Gonadotropins / physiology*
  • Homeostasis / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Inhibins / physiology
  • Luteinizing Hormone / physiology*
  • Menstrual Cycle / physiology*
  • Models, Biological*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Progesterone / physiology
  • Risk Assessment / methods
  • Time Factors
  • Toxicology

Substances

  • Estrogens
  • Gonadotropins
  • Progesterone
  • Inhibins
  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone