Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 379, Issue 2, pp 291–300 | Cite as

Effect of thyroid dysfunction on NOS expression in the female rat

  • Kaili Xu
  • Ye Tian
  • Xuechun Weng
  • Xusong Hu
  • Dai Heng
  • Guoliang Xia
  • Cheng ZhangEmail author
Regular Article


Thyroid hormones (THs) are vital for normal reproductive function and dysregulation of TH impairs follicular development. Although the functions of THs on female reproduction are of great interest, the mechanisms still remain unclear. Many studies have shown that NO plays important roles in female reproduction. In the present study, we investigate the effects of TH dysregulation on nitric oxide synthase types (NOS) expression in rats. Propylthiouracil (PTU) and L-thyroxine were administered to rats to induce hypo- and hyperthyroidism, respectively. Ovarian histology was detected by immunohistochemistry (IHC) and protein or mRNA content was analyzed by Western blotting or RT-PCR, respectively. The results showed that NOS1, NOS2 and NOS3 expressions were detected in the oocyte, granulosa cell and theca cell in all follicular stages, which were up-regulated by eCG treatment. NOS1 protein content was increased in both PTU and L-thyroxine treatments. There were no significant differences in NOS2 levels between the treatment and the control group. However, NOS3 was only increased in the hyperthyroid group. These results were consistent with the IHC staining. The present study provides evidence that TH dysregulation alters NOSs profiles, which suggests that NOSs/nitric oxide (NO) is possibly involved in the regulation of female reproduction.


Hypothyroid Hyperthyroid NOS Ovary Rat 



Thyroid hormones






Gonadotropin-releasing hormone


Equine chorionic gonadotropin


Follicle stimulating hormone


Luteinizing hormone


Nitric oxide synthase types


Nitric oxide






Glucose transporter protein


Funding information

This work was supported by the Beijing Municipal Natural Science Foundation (No. 5192001,5142003) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31671555; No. 31300958). This project was also supported by the Scientific Research Program of Beijing Municipal Commission of Education (KM201610028011) and The Project of State Key Laboratory of Agrobiotechnology (2019SKLAB6-2). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

All animal treatment procedures were in accordance with the Principles of the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and China Council on Animal Care and were approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee of Capital Normal University.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kaili Xu
    • 1
  • Ye Tian
    • 1
  • Xuechun Weng
    • 1
  • Xusong Hu
    • 1
  • Dai Heng
    • 1
  • Guoliang Xia
    • 2
  • Cheng Zhang
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.College of Life ScienceCapital Normal UniversityBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Agrobiotechnology, College of Biological SciencesChina Agricultural UniversityBeijingChina

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