Cell biochemistry and function

Aromatase expression is linked to estrogenic sensitivity of periurethral muscles in female rabbits.

PMID 25850953


Beyond its role in the conversion of androgens to estrogens, the expression of aromatase could influence on the estrogenic signalling in targeted tissues. Considering the well-defined biochemical and physiological differences between the pubococcygeus (Pcm) and bulbospongiosus (Bsm) muscles in female rabbits, it is presently hypothesized that the aromatase expression is differentially linked to the estrogen sensitivity of each muscle. To this end, serum estradiol levels and the aromatase expression, presence of ERα and ERβ and morphometry were evaluated in the Pcm and Bsm of female rabbits allocated in control, ovariectomized (OVX) and OVX treated with estradiol benzoate (OVX + EB) groups. Aromatase expression was high in the Pcm. Independently to serum estradiol, ovariectomy increased aromatase expression in the Pcm while decreased it in the Bsm. The EB treatment avoided the effect of ovariectomy only in the Pcm. The number of immunoreactive nuclei anti-ERα and anti-ERβ was high in the Pcm of OVX and OVX + EB rabbits, while those in the Bsm remained unchanged. The number of peripheral nuclei per fibre and the cross-sectional area-to-myonucleus ratio were modified only in the Pcm. Our findings support aromatase expression in the Pcm, and Bsm of rabbits is differentially linked to estrogenic sensitivity of each muscle.