Comparison of synthesis of 15α-hydroxylated steroids in males of four North American lamprey species

General and Comparative Endocrinology
By: , and 



Recent studies have provided evidence that 15α-hydroxytestosterone (15α-T) and 15α-hydroxyprogesterone (15α-P) are produced in vitro and in vivo in adult male sea lampreys (Petromyzonmarinus), and that circulatory levels increase in response to injections with gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). We examined four species from the Petromyzontidae family including silver lampreys (Ichthyomyzon unicuspis), chestnut lampreys (I. castaneus), American brook lampreys (Lethenteron appendix), and Pacific lampreys (Entosphenus tridentatus) to determine if these unusual steroids were unique to sea lampreys or a common feature in lamprey species. In vitro production was examined through incubations of testis with tritiated precursors, and 15α-T and 15α-P production was confirmed in all species through co-elution with standards on both high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and thin layerchromatography. In vivo production was proven by demonstrating that HPLC-fractionated plasma had peaks of immunoreactive 15α-T and 15α-P that co-eluted with standards through using previously developed radioimmunoassays for 15α-T and 15α-P. The possible functionality of 15α-T and 15α-P was further examined in silver and Pacific lampreys by investigating the effect of injection of either type of lamprey GnRH on plasma concentrations of 15α-T and 15α-P. Injections with exogenous GnRH did not affect circulatory levels of either steroid in silver lampreys, and only GnRH III elicited higher levels of both steroids in Pacific lampreys. The 15α-hydroxylase enzyme(s) for steroids appeared to present in adult males of all species examined, but the question of whether 15α-hydroxylated steroids are functional in these lamprey species, and the significance of the 15-hydroxyl group, requires further research.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Comparison of synthesis of 15α-hydroxylated steroids in males of four North American lamprey species
Series title General and Comparative Endocrinology
DOI 10.1016/j.ygcen.2005.11.003
Volume 146
Issue 2
Year Published 2006
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Western Fisheries Research Center
Description 8 p.
First page 149
Last page 156
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N