Differential gene expression in mice uterine or vaginal tissue following pre or perinatal exposure to DES

Expression of estrogen receptor and proto-oncogene messenger ribonucleic acids in reproductive tracts of neonatally diethylstilbestrol-exposed female mice with or without post-puberal estrogen administration

1996 Study Abstract

Perinatal treatment of female mice with natural and synthetic estrogens including diethylstilbestrol (DES) results in estrogen-independent persistent proliferation and cornification of the vaginal epithelium.

The dynamics of the induction of estrogen receptor (ER), c-jun, c-fos and c-myc mRNAs by 17 beta-estradiol (E2) was examined in the uterus and vagina of neonatally DES-exposed and -unexposed ovariectomized adult mice.

In the uterus of neonatally DES-unexposed ovariectomized mice, the expression of ER mRNA increased within 1 h after E2 administration and declined by 12 h thereafter. ER mRNA in the vagina decreased within 1 h after the stimulation and recovered by 12 h thereafter.

In the uterus, c-jun and c-fos mRNAs increased in concentration within 1 h after E2 administration, showing a peak 3 h after the stimulation; they decreased with time thereafter. In the vagina, the concentration of c-jun and c-fos mRNAs increased rapidly, reaching a peak within 1 h after the stimulation.

However, the expression of c-myc in uterus and vagina was not changed by postpuberal E2.

These results suggest that estrogen regulation of ER and proto-oncogene mRNAs in the vagina differs from those in the uterus. In the neonatally DES-exposed ovariectomized adult mice, uterine ER mRNA expression levels were significantly higher than in the unexposed ovariectomized controls; however, vaginal levels were drastically lower than in the controls. Expression of c-jun and c-fos mRNAs was greater in both the uterus (3- and 6-fold, respectively) and the vagina (18- and 4-fold) of neonatally DES-exposed mice than in controls. The ER mRNA and the increased levels of c-fos and c-jun mRNAs in both uterus and vagina of neonatally DES-exposed ovariectomized mice were not further altered by post-puberal E2 and may be related to ovary-independent persistent changes in the genital tract.

Sources and more information
  • Expression of estrogen receptor and proto-oncogene messenger ribonucleic acids in reproductive tracts of neonatally diethylstilbestrol-exposed female mice with or without post-puberal estrogen administration, Experimental and clinical endocrinology & diabetes : official journal, German Society of Endocrinology and German Diabetes Association, DOI: 10.1055/s-0029-1211432, 1996.
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