Hormonal response of female goats to active immunization against a recombinant human inhibin alpha-subunit, and establishment of an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for caprine follicle-stimulating hormone

Reprod Domest Anim. 2001 Apr;36(2):65-71. doi: 10.1046/j.1439-0531.2001.00250.x.


The effect of selective immunosuppression of endogenous inhibin in goats on FSH, LH, progesterone and estradiol-17beta profiles was studied during the breeding and nonbreeding seasons. Eighteen adult female Boer goats were immunized against the recombinant human inhibin alpha-subunit (hINH-alpha). With the exception of estradiol, which was determined by radio-immunoassay (RIA), all plasma hormone concentrations were determined by ELISA. The ELISA for FSH presented in this paper was established in the authors' laboratory, based on an existing RIA. Mean basal concentrations of FSH were not affected by immunosuppression of endogenous inhibin, nor was there a difference in the amplitude of the pre-ovulatory FSH surge. Immunization against inhibin appears to eliminate the slight secondary rise of FSH occurring 12-20 h after the major surge associated with ovulation. The LH profiles of the immunized goats were characterized by lower basal concentrations both before and after the pre-ovulatory LH surge which itself was reduced by 50% in immunized does. By contrast, concentrations of circulating estradiol were significantly elevated after inhibin-immunization. Progesterone profiles were not affected. Extending immunization into the anoestrous season by a booster injection of hINH-alpha, implicating oestrus induction with a progestagen and eCG, produced no discernible differences in FSH and LH profiles in comparison with nonimmunized control goats. The findings suggest that in goats, paracrine factors may play a more significant role in controlling follicular activity than a feedback mechanism acting via the pituitary.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Breeding
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay / veterinary
  • Estradiol / blood
  • Estrus
  • Female
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / analysis
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood*
  • Goats / physiology*
  • Immunization / veterinary*
  • Immunization, Secondary / veterinary
  • Inhibins / immunology
  • Inhibins / physiology*
  • Kinetics
  • Luteinizing Hormone / analysis
  • Luteinizing Hormone / blood*
  • Ovulation / blood
  • Progesterone / blood
  • Recombinant Proteins / immunology
  • Seasons


  • Recombinant Proteins
  • inhibin-alpha subunit
  • Progesterone
  • Estradiol
  • Inhibins
  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone