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. 2019 Jan 5;479:103-109.
doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2018.09.006. Epub 2018 Oct 2.

Hyperglycosylated hCG Activates LH/hCG-receptor With Lower Activity Than hCG

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Hyperglycosylated hCG Activates LH/hCG-receptor With Lower Activity Than hCG

Hannu Koistinen et al. Mol Cell Endocrinol. .

Abstract

While human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) appears to have an essential role in early pregnancy, it is controversial whether the hyperglycosylated form of hCG (hCG-h), which is the major hCG isoform during the first 4-5 weeks of pregnancy, is able to activate LH/hCG receptor (LHCGR). To address this, we utilized different extensively characterized hCG and hCGβ reference reagents, cell culture- and urine-derived hCG-h preparations, and an in vitro reporter system for LHCGR activation. The WHO hCG reference reagent (99/688) was found to activate LHCGR with an EC50-value of 3.3 ± 0.6 pmol/L (n = 9). All three studied hCG-h preparations were also able to activate LHCGR, but with a lower potency (EC50-values between 7.1 ± 0.5 and 14 ± 3 pmol/L, n = 5-11, for all P < 0.05 as compared to the hCG reference). The activities of commercial urinary hCG (Pregnyl) and recombinant hCG (Ovitrelle) preparations were intermediate between those of the hCG reference and the hCG-h. These results strongly suggest that the hCG-h is functionally similar to hCG, although it has lower potency for LHCGR activation. Whether this explains the reduced proportion of hCG-h to hCG reported in patients developing early onset pre-eclampsia or those having early pregnancy loss remains to be determined.

Keywords: Hyperglycosylated hCG; LH/hCG receptor; LHCGR; Reporter system; hCG.

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