Involvement of bone morphogenetic protein activity in somatostatin actions on ovarian steroidogenesis

Eri Nakamura, Fumio Otsuka, Kenichi Inagaki, Naoko Yamauchi, Kanako Ogura-Ochi, Tomoko Miyoshi, Kishio Toma, Masaya Takeda, Hirofumi Makino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Somatostatin is expressed in the hypothalamus, pancreas and gastrointestinal tracts and it inhibits the secretion of various hormones in vivo. In the rodent ovary, somatostatin receptor (SSTR) subtypes 2 and 5 are expressed in granulosa cells and oocytes. Somatostatin analogs have been clinically used for treatment of endocrine tumors. For this purpose, relatively high-dose or long-term treatments of somatostatin analogs are necessary; however, the direct and continuous impact of somatostatin analogs on gonadal functions has yet to be elucidated. In the present study, we investigated the effects of somatostatin analogs (octreotide and pasireotide) on ovarian steroidogenesis by rat primary granulosa cell culture. The expression levels of SSTR2 and SSTR5 in granulosa cells were upregulated by FSH treatment. Treatment with somatostatin analogs decreased FSH-induced estradiol production with reduction in aromatase mRNA expression, while the treatment also suppressed FSH-induced progesterone production with reduction of mRNAs levels of StAR, P450scc and 3βHSD2 in granulosa cells. This trend was also observed in a granulosa/oocyte co-culture condition. The effect of pasireotide was more potent than that of octreotide. FSH-induced synthesis of steroids and cAMP was also suppressed by somatostatin analog treatment. Notably, pretreatment with a BMP-binding protein, noggin reversed the suppressive effects of somatostatin analogs on progesterone and cAMP production, suggesting that the endogenous BMP system is functionally involved in the SSTR effects in granulosa cells. Treatment with BMP-2, -4, -6 and -7 decreased the mRNA expression of inhibitory Smads6 and 7, leading to enhancement of BMP actions detected by Id-1 transcription in granulosa cells. Collectively, the results revealed that SSTR activation modulates ovarian steroidogenesis by upregulating endogenous BMP activity in growing follicles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-74
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013


  • Bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)
  • Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
  • Granulosa cells
  • Oocyte
  • Somatostatin
  • Steroidogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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