, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 109–115 | Cite as

Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) inhibits steroidogenesis of bovine ovarian granulosa and thecal cells in vitro

Involvement of TNF-α receptors


The effect of recombinant bovine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) on steroidogenesis and numbers of bovine ovarian granulosa and thecal cells has been studied, and specific binding sites for 125I-TNF-α on ovarian cells have been determined. Granulosa cells have been examined from small (surface diameter 1–5 mm) follicles, whereas thecal cells from large (≥ 8 mm) follicles were utilized. Increasing doses of TNF-α significantly attenuated insulin- and IGF-I-induced estradiol production by granulosa cells from small follicles, but had no effect on basal estradiol production. Moreover, TNF-α significantly attenuated insulin- and LH-induced androstenedione production by thecal cells from large follicles. TNF-α had little or no effect on the numbers of granulosa and thecal cells in these same studies. Specific high-affinity, low-capacity binding of 125I-TNF-α was also demonstrable in granulosa and thecal cells. Thus, it appears that TNF-α inhibits insulin-and IGF-I-induced estradiol production by granulosa cells and androstenedione production by thecal cells via TNF-α binding to its own receptor.

Key Words

Tumor necrosis factor-α ovary granulosa cells thecal cells steroidogenesis 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Animal ScienceOklahoma State UniversityStillwater

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