Steroidogenic factor 1 (SF-1) is essential for endocrine development and function.

Department of Internal Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas 75235, USA.
The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Impact Factor: 4.05). 69(1-6):13-8.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Steroidogenic factor 1 (SF-1), an orphan nuclear receptor, initially was isolated as a key regulator of the tissue-specific expression of the cytochrome P450 steroid hydroxylases. Thereafter, analyses of sites of SF-1 expression during mouse embryological development hinted at considerably expanded roles for SF-1, roles that were strikingly confirmed through the analyses of SF-1 knockout mice. These SF-1 knockout mice exhibited adrenal and gonadal agenesis, associated with male-to-female sex reversal of their internal and external genitalia and death from adrenocortical insufficiency. These findings showed unequivocally that SF-1 is essential for the embryonic survival of the primary steroidogenic organs. SF-1 knockout mice also had impaired pituitary expression of gonadotropins and agenesis of the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMH), establishing that SF-1 regulates reproductive function at all three levels of the hypothalamic-pituitary gonadal axis. This article reviews the experiments that have defined these essential roles of SF-1 in endocrine development and highlights important areas for future studies.

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