Hormonal regulation of matrix metalloproteinase inhibitors in rat granulosa cells and ovaries

Julie S. Mann, Mark S. Kindy, Dylan R. Edwards, Thomas E. Curry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


Metalloproteinases, such as collagenase or gelatinase, and their associated inhibitors appear to control connective tissue remodeling during follicular rupture. We examined the regulation of metalloproteinase inhibitor activity by various treatments in cultured rat granulosa cells. Granulosa cells were harvested from immature PMSG-primed rats and cultured with LH, the phorbol ester 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol 13-acetate (TPA), cAMP, or forskolin. Inhibitor activity was measured in the medium. Increasing concentrations of either LH (0.1-1000 ng/ml) or TPA (2.5-100 nM) resulted in a dose-dependent increase in metalloproteinase inhibitor activity (2.9- and 2.4-fold increases above control, respectively). There was also a time- dependent induction of inhibitor activity in cells incubated in the presence of LH (100 ng/ml) for 6, 12, 18, or 24 h. Forskolin (0.1 mM) or cAMP (1 mM) treatment increased inhibitor activity 2.8- and 1.6-fold above that in control cultures. LH arid TPA treatment in combination resulted in an additive increase in inhibitor activity compared to LH or TPA treatment alone. This finding suggested that the granulosa cell inhibitor activity might be induced through separate intracellular pathways. The inhibitor present in conditioned medium was isolated by chromatographic separation on a Sepharose 6B mol wt exclusion column. The inhibitor present was approximately 28, 000 mol wt, which is consistent with the size of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP). In addition to the granulosa cell experiments, changes in ovarian mRNA levels for TIMP were determined. There was a preovulatory increase in TIMP mRNA from whole rat ovaries, with the highest levels detected 12 h after hCG administration. The present study establishes that metalloproteinase inhibitor activity from rat granulosa cells is induced through separate pathways: A LH-cAMP-dependent protein kinase-A pathway and a cAMP-independent protein kinase-C pathway. Furthermore, a TIMP-like protein is observed in granulosa cell-conditioned medium, while TIMP mRNA is present in rat ovaries and increases before ovulation, suggesting that the granulosa cell metalloproteinase inhibitor is TIMP. We propose that TIMP acts in part to control the site and extent of follicular connective tissue remodeling associated with ovulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1825-1832
Number of pages8
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology


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