Effect of estradiol on expression and activation of Akt protein in rat hypothalamus exposed to chronic [D-Met2, Pro5]- enkephalinamide treatment

Zsuzsanna Vértes, Ferenc Lengyel, Angéla Oszter, József L. Környei, Balázs Sumegi, Marietta Vértes

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Adult ovariectomized rats were implanted with [D-Met2, Pro 5]-enkephalinamide (ENK)-containing osmotic minipumps. Two hours prior to sacrifice, some animals were treated with estradiol-17β (E2) at a dose 10 μg/100 g bodyweight (BW). Expression and activation of Akt proteins, nuclear [3H]estradiol binding, and the expression of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and beta (ERβ) and of progesterone receptor (PR) were investigated. Estradiol increased the level of activated Akt protein (pAkt473) in the hypothalamus by 52±11% in comparison to the vehicle-treated controls. No such effect of E2 was observed 24 and 48 h after ENK implantation. This effect of ENK was abolished by concomitant treatment with naloxone. Time-dependent changes in nuclear [3H]estradiol binding and the expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors were also detected in the hypothalamus of ENK-implanted and E2-treated rats. At 24-48 h following ENK implantation, expression of ERα and high affinity [3H]estradiol binding decreased. At this time point, the PR level was also reduced, while the ERβ level was augmented. In conclusion, these results suggest that the stimulatory effects of E2 on the expression and activation of Akt protein and the expression of ERα and PR are negatively regulated in rat hypothalamus exposed to chronic ENK treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-270
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2004



  • Akt signaling
  • Chronic opioid treatment
  • Hypothalamus
  • Sex steroid receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry

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