Expression of steroidogenic enzymes and synthesis of sex steroid hormones from DHEA in skeletal muscle of rats

Katsuji Aizawa, Motoyuki Iemitsu, Seiji Maeda, Subrina Jesmin, Takeshi Otsuki, Chishimba N. Mowa, Takashi Miyauchi, Noboru Mesaki*


研究成果: Article査読

73 被引用数 (Scopus)


The functional importance of sex steroid hormones (testosterone and estrogens), derived from extragonadal tissues, has recently gained significant appreciation. Circulating dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is peripherally taken up and converted to testosterone by 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (HSD) and 17β-HSD, and testosterone in turn is irreversibly converted to estrogens by aromatase cytochrome P-450 (P450arom). Although sex steroid hormones have been implicated in skeletal muscle regulation and adaptation, it is unclear whether skeletal muscles have a local steroidogenic enzymatic machinery capable of metabolizing circulating DHEA. Thus, here, we investigate whether the three key steroidogenic enzymes (3β-HSD, 17β-HSD, and P450arom) are present in the skeletal muscle and are capable of generating sex steroid hormones. Consistent with our hypothesis, the present study demonstrates mRNA and protein expression of these enzymes in the skeletal muscle cells of rats both in vivo and in culture (in vitro). Importantly, we also show an intracellular formation of testosterone and estradiol from DHEA or testosterone in cultured muscle cells in a dose-dependent manner. These findings are novel and important in that they provide the first evidence showing that skeletal muscles are capable of locally synthesizing sex steroid hormones from circulating DHEA or testosterone.

ジャーナルAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
出版ステータスPublished - 2007 2月

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • 内分泌学、糖尿病および代謝内科学
  • 生理学
  • 生理学(医学)


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