The temporal aspects of estrogen treatment on serum prolactin concentrations basally and in response to a 10 μg intravenous injection of gonadotropin-releasing hormone were assessed in eight postmenopausal women. The response of prolactin to gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulation was compared with that of follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone obtained simultaneously. Basal serum prolactin increased significantly (p < 0.001) in response to estrogen treatment, and a positive correlation was found between the serum concentrations of estradiol and prolactin (r2 = 0.266; p = 0.0011). Gonadotropin-releasing hormone induced a significant increase in serum prolactin concentrations, which was greater after 5 to 10 days of estrogen treatment compared with that in the estrogen-depleted state (p = 0.031). No correlation was found between gonadotropin-releasing hormone-stimulated prolactin and luteinizing hormone or follicle-stimulating hormone release. These data demonstrate that estrogen treatment of previously hypoestrogenemic postmenopausal women potentiates gonadotropin-releasing hormone-stimulated prolactin release. Furthermore, our data suggest that the previously described paracrine interaction between the gonadotropens and lactotropes exerted by gonadotropin-releasing hormone does not appear to be mediated via increased gonadotropin release.
- gonadotropin-releasing hormone
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynecology