The α-Subunit of the Glycoprotein Hormones: Evolution of a Combinatorial Code for Placenta-Specific Expression

  • Robin H. Pittman
  • John H. Nilson
Conference paper
Part of the Serono Symposia, USA Norwell, Massachusetts book series (SERONOSYMP)


Luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), andchorionic gonadotropin (CG) belong to a family of glycoprotein hormones. Each member is composed of a common α-subunit, the product of a single-copy gene, and a unique β-subunit that confers biological specificity (1). All mammals synthesize LH, FSH, and TSH in the pituitary, but primates and horses are the only mammals that synthesize CG, a placental glycoprotein hormone. Thus, because of its dual site of synthesis, the primate α-subunit has been a useful and convenient model for the study of mechanisms that regulate tissue-specific gene expression.


Luteinizing Hormone Thyroid Stimulate Hormone Glycoprotein Hormone BeWo Cell Combinatorial Code 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York, Inc. 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robin H. Pittman
  • John H. Nilson

There are no affiliations available

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