Role of interleukins in the regulation of ovarian functions.

Abstract

UNLABELLED Reproduction is a result of coordinated signaling network between gonads and pituitary/hypothalamus. Ovarian functions, such as follicular development, ovulation, luteinisation, luteolysis, and remodeling of the endometrium, are controlled by endocrine, paracrine and autocrine factors. Ovulation is a unique biological process by which the complex of a mature oocyte and surrounding somatic cumulus cells (CCs), named oocyte-cumulus complex (OCC), is released from the follicle into the oviduct for transport and fertilization. Recently, evidence has been accumulated that the immune system might represent an additional local regulator of the ovarian functions that are essentially modulated by gonadotropins. Moreover, the ovulation is similar to an inflammatory response: follicles become hyperemic, produce prostaglandins (PGs), and synthesize a hyaluronan-rich extracellular matrix. Cytokines are originally referred as numerous signaling substances secreted by certain cells of the immune system which influence the activity of other cells. A number of studies have shown that cytokines may modulate ovarian functions and play an important role in the ovulation. The most known cytokines related to the reproduction are interleukins (ILs). These molecules have been localized in the reproduction-related body fluids and various ovarian cell types, such as the oocytes, granulosa (GCs) and theca cells (TCs) in several mammalian species. Moreover, macrophages in the ovary have been shown to secrete cytokines, including ILs. The present review summarizes the current knowledge on ILs in regard of their role in the regulation of selected ovarian functions. KEYWORDS cytokines, interleukins, ovary, steroidogenesis, ovulation, corpus luteum.

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@article{Smolikova2012RoleOI, title={Role of interleukins in the regulation of ovarian functions.}, author={K Smolikova and Al{\vz}beta Mlynar{\vc}{\'i}kov{\'a} and Soňa Scsukov{\'a}}, journal={Endocrine regulations}, year={2012}, volume={46 4}, pages={237-53} }