A new key neurohormone controlling reproduction, gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH)

Biosynthesis, mode of action and functional significance

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    135 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Identification of novel neurohormones that play important roles in the regulation of pituitary function is essential for the progress of neurobiology. The decapeptide gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is the primary factor responsible for the hypothalamic control of gonadotropin secretion. Gonadal sex steroids and inhibin inhibit gonadotropin secretion via feedback from the gonads, but a neuropeptide inhibitor of gonadotropin secretion was, until recently, unknown in vertebrates. In 2000, a novel hypothalamic dodecapeptide that inhibits gonadotropin release was identified in quail and termed gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH). This was the first demonstration of a hypothalamic neuropeptide inhibiting gonadotropin release in any vertebrate. GnIH acts on the pituitary and GnRH neurons in the hypothalamus via a novel G protein-coupled receptor for GnIH to inhibit gonadal development and maintenance by decreasing gonadotropin release and synthesis. GnIH neurons express the melatonin receptor and melatonin stimulates the expression of GnIH. Because GnIH exists and functions in several avian species, GnIH is considered to be a new key neurohormone controlling avian reproduction. From a broader perspective, subsequently the presence of GnIH homologous peptides has been demonstrated in other vertebrates. Mammalian GnIH homologous peptides also act to inhibit reproduction by decreasing gonadotropin release in several mammalian species. Thus, the discovery of GnIH has opened the door to a new research field in reproductive neurobiology. This review summarizes the advances made in our understanding of the biosynthesis, mode of action and functional significance of GnIH, a newly discovered key neurohormone, and its homologous peptides.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)76-88
    Number of pages13
    JournalProgress in Neurobiology
    Volume88
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2009 May

    Fingerprint

    Gonadotropins
    Reproduction
    Neurotransmitter Agents
    Hormones
    Vertebrates
    Neurobiology
    Peptide Hormones
    Neuropeptides
    Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
    Melatonin Receptors
    Pituitary Gonadotropins
    Neurons
    Inhibins
    Quail
    Gonads
    Melatonin
    G-Protein-Coupled Receptors
    Hypothalamus

    Keywords

    • Gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH)
    • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH)
    • Gonadotropins
    • Hypothalamus
    • Kisspeptin
    • Melatonin
    • Neuropeptides
    • Pituitary
    • Reproduction

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Neuroscience(all)

    Cite this

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    title = "A new key neurohormone controlling reproduction, gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH): Biosynthesis, mode of action and functional significance",
    abstract = "Identification of novel neurohormones that play important roles in the regulation of pituitary function is essential for the progress of neurobiology. The decapeptide gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is the primary factor responsible for the hypothalamic control of gonadotropin secretion. Gonadal sex steroids and inhibin inhibit gonadotropin secretion via feedback from the gonads, but a neuropeptide inhibitor of gonadotropin secretion was, until recently, unknown in vertebrates. In 2000, a novel hypothalamic dodecapeptide that inhibits gonadotropin release was identified in quail and termed gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH). This was the first demonstration of a hypothalamic neuropeptide inhibiting gonadotropin release in any vertebrate. GnIH acts on the pituitary and GnRH neurons in the hypothalamus via a novel G protein-coupled receptor for GnIH to inhibit gonadal development and maintenance by decreasing gonadotropin release and synthesis. GnIH neurons express the melatonin receptor and melatonin stimulates the expression of GnIH. Because GnIH exists and functions in several avian species, GnIH is considered to be a new key neurohormone controlling avian reproduction. From a broader perspective, subsequently the presence of GnIH homologous peptides has been demonstrated in other vertebrates. Mammalian GnIH homologous peptides also act to inhibit reproduction by decreasing gonadotropin release in several mammalian species. Thus, the discovery of GnIH has opened the door to a new research field in reproductive neurobiology. This review summarizes the advances made in our understanding of the biosynthesis, mode of action and functional significance of GnIH, a newly discovered key neurohormone, and its homologous peptides.",
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