, Volume 59, Issue 1, pp 191–202 | Cite as

Triiodothyronine differentially modulates the LH and FSH synthesis and secretion in male rats

  • Renata Marino Romano
  • Paula Bargi-Souza
  • Erika Lia Brunetto
  • Francemilson Goulart-Silva
  • Renato M. Salgado
  • Telma Maria Tenorio Zorn
  • Maria Tereza Nunes
Original Article


Hypothyroidism and thyrotoxicosis produce adverse effects in male reproduction by unknown mechanisms. We investigated whether triiodothyronine (T3) modulates luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) synthesis/secretion, by inducing different thyroid states. In hypothyroidism, the content of Lhb and Fshb mRNAs was increased, while their association to ribosomes and the protein content were reduced and the serum LH and FSH concentrations were augmented and decreased, respectively. Thyrotoxicosis reduced Lhb mRNA and LH serum concentration, and increased Lhb mRNA translational rate. The Fshb mRNA content and its association to ribosomes were also increased, whereas FSH serum concentrations were comparable to euthyroid levels. Acute T3 treatment decreased the total content of Lhb and Fshb mRNAs, and increased their association to ribosomes, as well as the LHB and FSHB contents in secretory granules. This study shows that T3 acts on gonadotrophs, resulting in direct effects on LH and FSH synthesis/secretion of male rats, suggesting that some reproductive disorders observed in men may be associated with thyroid hormone imbalances.


LH FSH Triiodothyronine Hypothyroidism Hyperthyroidism Posttranscriptional regulation 



The authors thank Leonice Lourenço Poyares for the excellent technical assistance.


This work was funded by the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo—FAPESP, (2008/50977-2, 2009/17822-8, 2013/05629-4) and Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico—CNPq (305936/2013-1), Brazil. P.B.S., R.M.R., and E.L.B. are the recipients of a FAPESP fellowship.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing of interests.

Ethical approval

All procedures are in accordance to the Brazilian College of Animal Experimentation and approved by the Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sao Paulo—Ethical Committee for Animal Research (protocol 029/55/02).

Supplementary material

12020_2017_1487_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (5.3 mb)
Supplemental Figure 1
12020_2017_1487_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (1.8 mb)
Supplemental Figure 2


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Institute of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of Sao PauloSao PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, Institute of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of Sao PauloSao PauloBrazil

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