GnRH plays a pivotal role in the reproductive system, and GnRH analogs have wide therapeutic applications ranging from the treatment of prostatic cancer to infertility. Determination of the predicted structure of the GnRH receptor (GnRHR) would illuminate the mechanisms of receptor activation and regulation and allow directed design of improved GnRH analogs. We report the cloning of a cDNA representing the mouse GnRHR and confirm its identity using Xenopus oocyte expression. Injection of sense RNA transcript leads to the expression of a functional, high affinity GnRHR. Expression of the GnRHR using gonadotrope cell line RNA, however, is blocked by an antisense oligonucleotide. In situ hybridization in the rat anterior pituitary reveals a characteristic GnRHR distribution. The nucleotide sequence encodes a 327-amino acid protein which has the seven putative transmembrane domains characteristic of G protein-coupled receptors, but which lacks a typical intracellular C-terminus. The unusual structure and novel potential regulatory domain of the GnRHR may explain unique aspects of its signal transduction and regulation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology