Hormonal regulation of expression of the endogenous and transfected human growth hormone gene

Mol Endocrinol. 1987 Aug;1(8):569-76. doi: 10.1210/mend-1-8-569.


Expression of the endogenous human GH (hGH) gene in response to glucocorticoids, thyroid hormone, and insulin was studied in cultures of dispersed GH-secreting human pituitary adenomas. Results were compared to those obtained when the hGH gene was transfected into rat pituitary tumor cells (GC). In the human pituitary cells the glucocorticoid dexamethasone [(Dex) 10(-6) M] increased the release of GH and the levels of GH mRNA by 2 to 4-fold (P less than 0.05). T3 (10(-8) M) had no effect on GH mRNA but increased hGH release by 2- to 6-fold (P less than 0.01). Insulin (5 x 10(-9) M) alone had no significant effect on either hGH mRNA or protein, but blunted the effect of Dex. Among 11 of 18 GC cell clones transfected with the hGH gene with detectable hGH mRNA expression, Dex increased hGH mRNA levels in seven and T3 treatment reduced hGH mRNA levels in eight. Conversely, rat GH mRNA levels from the endogenous rat gene were increased by either Dex or T3 in all 18 clones. Insulin alone or in combination with T3 or Dex was found to increase hGH mRNA levels in some cell lines and to decrease hGH mRNA levels in others; these effects were correlated strongly (r = 0.88; P less than 0.001) with the influence of insulin on the endogenous rat GH gene, implying that individual cellular differences can simultaneously affect the insulin responsiveness of both genes.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Dexamethasone / pharmacology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / drug effects*
  • Growth Hormone / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Insulin / pharmacology*
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Transfection / genetics*
  • Triiodothyronine / pharmacology*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Insulin
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Triiodothyronine
  • Dexamethasone
  • Growth Hormone