Blockade of LH release and ovulation in the rabbit with inhibitory analogues of luteinizing hormone releasing hormone

Christopher P. Phelps, David H. Coy, Andrew V. Schally, Charles H. Sawyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Plasma LH levels and ovulation were studied in female rabbits following administration of several inhibitory analogues of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) before and after mating with experienced males. Administration of (D-Phe2, D-Leu6)-LHRH (1.5 mg/kh sc) to does 30 min before mating did not prevent either LH release or ovulation. However, a single sc injection of (D-Phe2, L-Phe3, D-Phe6)-LHRH (6 mg/kg) given 30 min before mating in 4 rabbits resulted in a 30-60 min delay in the coitus-induced release of LH when compared with post-coital changes in the same animals injected with vehicle; however, all of the does ovulated. When multiple dosages of 4 mg/kg (D-Phe2, L-Phe3, D-Phe6)-LHRH were administered 3-5 times at half-hourly intervals beginning 30 min prior to mating there was a considerable reduction in plasma LH elevations at 0.5, 1.0, 2.0 and 4.0 h after mating and 3/5 treated rabbits showed partial or complete blockade of ovulation. Quite similar results were obtained with the same dosage of (D-Phe2, D-Trp3, D-Phe6)-LHRH. An early sharp peak in LH release and full ovulation were stimulated in 6 out of 6 does by a single iv injection of synthetic LHRH (500 ng/kg). However, in another experiment, 3 half-hourly sc injections (4 mg/kg) of (D-Phe2, L-Phe3, D-Phe6)-LHRH beginning 30 min before administering LHRH markedly reduced the rise in plasma LH (P<0.01) and completely blocked ovulation in all of the same 6 animals. An unsuccessful attempt was made to provide a test animal for LHRH analogue investigations by implanting 4 cm of silastic tubing filled with crystalline estradiol (E2) sc in ovariectomized (OVX) and intact does. In OVX does the silastic E2 implants resulted in a progressive decline in the ability to release LH in response to mating at 6 and at 20 days after implantation. With ovaries present, the E2 implant permitted post-coital LH release and ovulation at 4 d but not at 30 d post-implantation. At 30 d after removal of the E2 implant 3 out of 4 does had fully recovered the ability to release LH and ovulate post-coitally. Collectively, these results indicate that inhibitory analogues of LHRH can effectively block the ovulatory response to exogenous LHRH in rabbits, but that coitally-induced LH release and ovulation are less susceptible to blockade by the analogues. Silastic E2 implants, however, progressively and reversibly reduce the capacity of does to release LH after mating.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1526-1532
Number of pages7
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1977
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology


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