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, 45 (3), 440-6

A Developmental Study of the Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neuronal System During Sexual Maturation in the Male Djungarian Hamster

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A Developmental Study of the Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neuronal System During Sexual Maturation in the Male Djungarian Hamster

S M Yellon et al. Biol Reprod.

Abstract

The number, morphology, and distribution of gonadotropin-releasing hormone cell bodies were studied in the brain of the male Djungarian hamster during sexual maturation. Males were reared in long days (16L:8D) and were killed at 15, 25, or 40 days of age, before (n = 5), during (n = 4), or after puberty (n = 4), respectively. Brain sections (60 microns) from the rostral olfactory tubercle to the medial basal hypothalamus were processed for GnRH immunocytochemistry. Unipolar and bipolar neurons were immunolabeled for GnRH; both subtypes had smooth cell contours. Analysis of every section from the olfactory tubercle to the arcuate nucleus indicated that at all ages more than 75% of all GnRH-immunoreactive cell bodies were distributed in the diagonal band of Broca, medial preoptic area, lateral preoptic area, and lateral hypothalamic area. GnRH-positive somata were also found in other brain regions, but in each of these areas they represented less than 6% of the total GnRH neuron number. In peripubertal 25-day-old males, during the rapid phase of testes growth, the number of unipolar, but not bipolar, GnRH-labeled cells nearly doubled in the diagonal band of Broca compared to soma numbers in this location in prepubertal 15-day-old males. The same number of unipolar GnRH-stained somata were found in this region in 40-day-old as in 25-day-old hamsters. In the medial preoptic area, a similar doubling of unipolar neuron numbers was observed at 25 days, but by 40 days the number of unipolar immunostained GnRH cells was secondarily reduced to a level comparable to that at 15 days.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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