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Extensive in situ activation of nuclear estrogen receptors after exposure of murine uteri to tritiated estradiol or tritiated 4 hydroxytamoxifen

, : Extensive in situ activation of nuclear estrogen receptors after exposure of murine uteri to tritiated estradiol or tritiated 4 hydroxytamoxifen. Endocrinology 120(4): 1608-1614

Estrogen receptor activation has been examined in murine uteri by characterizing binding to ATP-Sepharose. Determinations were performed under conditions in which specific binding to estrogen receptors was demonstrated by both agonist and antagonist without participation by nonreceptor antiestrogen-binding components. Cell-free activation of estrogen receptors in cytosol was more effectively promoted by [3H] estradiol than by [3H]4-hydroxytamoxifen or [3H]tamoxifen aziridine. However, when in situ activation was examined after intact uteri were exposed to [3H]estradiol or [3H]4-hydroxytamoxifen, virtually all extracted nuclear receptors demonstrated activated binding to ATP-Sepharose within 20 min of hormone exposure. Profiles of nuclear receptor activation were remarkably similar after exposure to either agonist or antagonist. Estrogen receptors in cytosol prepared after exposing intact uteri to 3H-labeled ligands were characterized by much less ability to bind to ATP-Sepharose than nuclear receptors. After uteri were exposed to [3H]estradiol, the activated receptor fraction in the cytosol progressively increased in contrast to preparations obtained after uteri were exposed to [3H]4-hydroxytamoxifen, which demonstrated a constant level of activation. Thus, even when activation has occurred within the intact uterus, agonists and antagonists may be characterized by different apparent levels of receptor activation in the cytosol fraction. These differences in the cytosol, however, are considerably overshadowed by the extensive activation occuring within the nuclear fraction, which we have observed to be similar with agonist and antagonist. Since estrogen receptors appear to act within chromatin, and cytosol receptors may be produced by receptor redistribution during preparation, we interpret these observations to indicate that in situ receptor activation is very similar after exposure to either agonist or antagonist. Consequently, antagonism does not appear to be associated with antiestrogens that impede receptor activation within intact murine uteri.

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