The effect of age on somatostatin suppression of basal, growth hormone (GH) -releasing factor-stimulated, and dibutyryl adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate-stimulated GH release from rat pituitary cells in monolayer culture

Cuttler, L.; Welsh, J.B.; Szabo, M.

Endocrinology 119(1): 152-158


ISSN/ISBN: 0013-7227
PMID: 2873023
DOI: 10.1210/endo-119-1-152
Accession: 041617345

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To test the hypothesis that relative resistance of the somatotroph to somatostatin (SRIF) contributes to elevated circulating levels of GH in the newborn rat, we examined the effects of SRIF (0.1, 0.33, and 1 nM) on basal, human pancreatic GH-releasing factor-40 (hpGRF-40; 1 nM)-stimulated, and (Bu)2cAMP (0.5 mM)-stimulated GH release from pituitary cells of 2-day-old, 15-day-old, and adult Sprague-Dawley rats in monolayer culture. The effect of SRIF on basal GH release varied markedly with age. SRIF, in the doses studied, did not inhibit basal GH release (nanograms of GH per 10(5) cells/3 h) from pituitary cultures of 2-day-old rats. In those of 15-day-old rats, only the two higher doses of SRIF (0.33 and 1 nM) suppressed GH release. By contrast, in pituitary cell cultures of adult male and female rats, all doses of SRIF significantly inhibited basal GH release (P less than 0.001). Similarly, the degree of SRIF suppression of both hpGRF-40- and (Bu)2cAMP-stimulated GH release differed among the age groups. In pituitary cultures of 2-day-old rats, SRIF did not significantly inhibit stimulated GH release. In 15-day-old rat pituitary cells, SRIF inhibited GH release, but did not eradicate the stimulatory effect of hpGRF-40 or (Bu)2cAMP. By contrast, in pituitary cell cultures of adult male and female rats, SRIF completely abolished the stimulatory effect of both hpGRF-40 and (Bu)2cAMP. When expressed as a percentage of the control (or stimulated) value, GH release at each SRIF dose varied markedly with age (P less than 0.001). Furthermore, a similar age-associated trend was evident when, in a separate series of experiments (n = 37), we examined the suppressive effect of a single concentration of SRIF (0.33 nM) on (Bu)2cAMP (0.5 mM)-stimulated GH release in cultured pituitary cells of rats ranging in age from -1 (day 20 of gestation) to 78 days. The degree of suppression increased progressively with advancing age; GH release decreased from 82 +/- 2% (+/- SE) of stimulated values in cultured cells of perinatal rats to 20 +/- 1% of stimulated values in cultured cells of 78-day-old rats. There was a significant negative correlation between age and SRIF-inhibited GH release (r = -0.89; P less than 0.001).