A defining characteristic of the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonad reproductive endocrine axis is the episodic secretion of the pituitary gonadotropin hormones LH and FSH by the anterior pituitary gonadotropes. Hormone secretion is dictated by pulsatile stimulation, with GnRH released by hypothalamic neurons that bind and activate the G protein-coupled GnRH receptor expressed by gonadotropes. Hormone secretion and synthesis of gonadotropins are influenced by the amplitude and frequency of GnRH stimulation; variation in either affects the proportion of LH and FSH secreted and the differential regulation of hormone subunit gene expression. Therefore, proper decoding of GnRH signals is essential for appropriate gonadotropin synthesis and secretion. The GnRH receptor robustly activates downstream signaling cascades to facilitate exocytosis and stimulate gene expression and protein synthesis. It is necessary to rapidly quench signaling to preserve sensitivity and adaptability to changing pulse patterns. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated by receptor-Activated oxidases fulfill the role of rapid signaling intermediates that facilitate robust and transient signaling. However, excess ROS can be detrimental and, unchecked, can confuse signal interpretation. We demonstrate that sulfiredoxin (SRXN1), an ATP-dependent reductase, is essential for normal responses to GnRH receptor signaling and plays a central role in resolution of ROS induced by GnRH stimulation. SRXN1 expression is mitogen-Activated protein kinase dependent, and knockdown reduces Lhb and Fshb glycoprotein hormone subunit mRNA and promoter activity. Loss of SRXN1 leads to increased basal and GnRH-stimulated ROS levels. We conclude that SRXN1 is essential for normal responses to GnRH stimulation and plays an important role in ROS management.
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