2022 Volume 17 Issue 2
Article Contents

Liu Xiaochen, Liu Jing. Influences of Endocrine-disrupting Chemicals on Pituitary Gonadotropins: A Review[J]. Asian Journal of Ecotoxicology, 2022, 17(2): 1-19. doi: 10.7524/AJE.1673-5897.20211025001
Citation: Liu Xiaochen, Liu Jing. Influences of Endocrine-disrupting Chemicals on Pituitary Gonadotropins: A Review[J]. Asian Journal of Ecotoxicology, 2022, 17(2): 1-19. doi: 10.7524/AJE.1673-5897.20211025001

Influences of Endocrine-disrupting Chemicals on Pituitary Gonadotropins: A Review

  • Corresponding author: Liu Jing, jliue@zju.edu.cn
  • Received Date: 25/10/2021
    Accepted Date: 15/12/2021
    Fund Project:
  • A variety of pesticides, flame retardants, polychlorinated biphenyls, chemical in plastic articles, preservatives, industrial by-products, heavy metals and other pollutants, which are discharged into the environment through industrial and agricultural activities, have been proven to be endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs). Disruption of endocrine system by EDCs can occur in various ways, such as acting on the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonad (HPG) axis. The pituitary is an important endocrine organ in the HPG axis that connects the hypothalamus and the gonads. The gonadotropic cells in pituitary synthesize and secrete two gonadotropins, i.e. luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which play an essential role in sexual maturation and reproduction. When the gonadotropin cells act as the targets of EDCs, the synthesis, secretion, transportation or metabolism of LH and FSH may be disturbed, resulting in hormone imbalance, altering sexual maturity, impairing reproduction and even increasing the risk of endocrine and reproductive diseases. Some environmental epidemiological investigations and animal experiments have reported that EDCs exposure was associated with the changes in the serum levels of LH and FSH in humans and mammals. However, the studies on the toxicological mechanisms of EDCs affecting the synthesis and secretion of these two gonadotropins are relatively limited. This review aims to summarize the environmental epidemiological investigations, animal studies, and toxicological mechanisms regarding the effects of EDCs on gonadotropins, as well as discuss future research directions.
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Influences of Endocrine-disrupting Chemicals on Pituitary Gonadotropins: A Review

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Abstract: A variety of pesticides, flame retardants, polychlorinated biphenyls, chemical in plastic articles, preservatives, industrial by-products, heavy metals and other pollutants, which are discharged into the environment through industrial and agricultural activities, have been proven to be endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs). Disruption of endocrine system by EDCs can occur in various ways, such as acting on the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonad (HPG) axis. The pituitary is an important endocrine organ in the HPG axis that connects the hypothalamus and the gonads. The gonadotropic cells in pituitary synthesize and secrete two gonadotropins, i.e. luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which play an essential role in sexual maturation and reproduction. When the gonadotropin cells act as the targets of EDCs, the synthesis, secretion, transportation or metabolism of LH and FSH may be disturbed, resulting in hormone imbalance, altering sexual maturity, impairing reproduction and even increasing the risk of endocrine and reproductive diseases. Some environmental epidemiological investigations and animal experiments have reported that EDCs exposure was associated with the changes in the serum levels of LH and FSH in humans and mammals. However, the studies on the toxicological mechanisms of EDCs affecting the synthesis and secretion of these two gonadotropins are relatively limited. This review aims to summarize the environmental epidemiological investigations, animal studies, and toxicological mechanisms regarding the effects of EDCs on gonadotropins, as well as discuss future research directions.

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