Oxytocin is an acute stimulus of prostaglandin (PG) F(2α) secretion from the ovine uterine endometrium. The high level of PGF(2α) secretion induced by oxytocin and the short half-life of the prostaglandin synthase-2 (PGHS-2) enzyme implies that synthesis of PGHS-2 may be essential at this time. The objective of this study was to determine if the increase in PGF(2α) secretion induced by oxytocin is associated with an increase in PGHS-2 mRNA. In experiment 1, oxytocin induced a rapid increase in serum concentration of 13,14-dihydro-15-keto-prostaglandin F(2α) (the stable metabolite of PGF(2α); PGFM) that was detected within 7.5 min (P < 0.05) and peaked at 25 min post injection. This was associated with an unusually rapid increase in the concentration of PGHS-2 mRNA at 25 rain past oxytocin injection (P < 0.05). Endometrial concentrations of PGHS-2 mRNA returned to basal levels at 90 min post injection. Experiment 2 was conducted to further characterize the time coarse of induction of PGHS-2 mRNA following oxytocin administration. Oxytocin induced a rapid increase in serum concentrations of PGFM. As in experiment 1, an increase in concentrations of PGHS-2 mRNA was detected at 25 min after oxytocin (P = 0.06). Concentrations of PGHS-2 mRNA were intermediate at 40 min and returned to basal levels at 60 min post injection. Thus, there is a rapid increase in endometrial concentrations of PGHS-2 mRNA following oxytocin stimulation of PGF(2α) secretion. This increase in PGHS-2 mRNA may be required to maintain PGHS-2 enzyme levels during pulsatile secretion of PGF(2α) at luteolysis.
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