Corticotropin-releasing hormone inhibition of gonadotropin secretion during the menstrual cycle

Antonio Mancini, Salvatore Maria Corsello, Angelina Barini, Antonino Barbarino, Laura De Marinis Grasso, Silvia Della Casa, G Folli, A Tofani, C D'Amico, P Sambo

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47 Citations (Scopus)


To determine whether corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) exerts an inhibitory action on gonadotropin secretion in normal fertile women, the effects of CRH on luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), and cortisol secretion were studied during the menstrual cycle. CRH had no effect on LH release during the midfollicular phase of the cycle. By contrast, IV injection of 100 micrograms CRH elicited significant decreases in LH concentrations during late follicular (-50%) and midluteal (-52%) phases of the cycle. LH concentrations decreased during the four-hours following injection of CRH and returned to those observed during the control period five hours after injection. Similarly, CRH elicited a significant decrease in FSH secretion during the midluteal phase of the cycle. CRH injection induced an increase in cortisol release during all phases of the cycle. These data demonstrate that exogenous CRH administration results in inhibition of gonadotropin secretion in late follicular and midluteal phases of the cycle. These results suggest that elevated endogenous CRH levels resulting in increased cortisol secretion could contribute to decreased gonadotropin secretion and, thus, disruption of reproductive function during stressful conditions in women.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)504-506
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 1989


  • Adult
  • Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • Female
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone
  • Follicular Phase
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone
  • Luteal Phase
  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Menstrual Cycle


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