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Publications (2)7.54 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Dominant and territorial behaviour are known social phenomena in cichlids and social stress influences reproduction and growth. The gonadotropic hormones trigger spermatogenesis and subordinate males have typically lower levels of gonadotropins than dominant males. In this study, we compared testis morphology and gene expression of dominant and subordinate Nile tilapia males (d- and s-males) in socially stable communities. The d-males had the highest gonadosomatic index but they were not the largest animals in the majority of studied cases. Long-term d-males showed large groups of Leydig cells and hyperplasia of the tunica albuginea due to numerous cytochrome-P450-11β-hydroxylase (Cyp11b) expressing myoid cells. Increased Cyp11b expression in d-males was reflected by elevated 11-ketotestosterone plasma values. However, immunofluorescence microscopy and expression analysis of selected genes revealed that most s-males conserved their capability for spermatogenesis and are, therefore, ready for reproduction when the social environment changes. Moreover, in s-males gene expression analysis by quantitative RT-PCR showed increased transcript levels for germ line-specific genes (vasa, sox2 and dmc1) and Sertoli-specific genes (amh, amhrII and dmrt1) whereas gene expression of key factors for steroid production (sf1 and cyp11b) were reduced. The Nile tilapia is a promising model to study social cues and gonadotropic signals on testis development in vertebrates.
    Reproduction 01/2012; 143(1):71-84. · 3.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aging is often associated with weight gain caused by metabolic changes including an increase of body fat. In this study we assessed the impact of age on estrogen responsiveness in the uterus and adipose tissue (AT) in aromatase-knockout (ArKO) mice. ArKO mice at the age of three or twelve months respectively were treated s.c. with vehicle, E(2) (10 μg/kg BW/d) or genistein (15 mg/kg BW/d) for three days. In the ArKO mouse model we were able to demonstrate that estrogen treatment resulted in an age specific response pattern both on a physiological and molecular level. Assessment of basal gene expression levels revealed significant age dependent differences only for elevated Esr1 levels in the uterus and leptin levels in infrarenal fat as well as lower levels of Pparg in the gonadal fat tissue. Investigating age dependency of estrogen responsiveness we were able to show that the E(2) and genistein resulted in age related pattern of regulation of expression of Esr1 and Lep in infrarenal and gonadal AT as well as the uterine expression of Pgr, Ltf and Pparg. In conclusion, evidence is provided that aging has an impact on the effectiveness of estrogen regulated processes in uterus and AT of ArKO mice. It remains to be elucidated whether or not this is associated with weight gain caused by an increase in body fat mass.
    The Journal of steroid biochemistry and molecular biology 01/2012; 128(1-2):29-37. · 3.98 Impact Factor