The hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis controls development, reproduction, and metabolism. Although most studies have focused on the hierarchy from the brain to the gonad, many questions remain unresolved concerning the feedback from the gonad to the central nervous system, especially regarding the potential epigenetic modifications in hypothalamic neurons. In the present report, we generated genetically modified mice lacking histone H3 lysine 27 (H3K27) demethylase Jumonji domain-containing 3 (JMJD3) in hypothalamic rat-insulin-promoter-expressing neurons (RIP-Cre neurons). The female mutant mice displayed late-onset obesity owing to reduced locomotor activity and decreased energy expenditure. JMJD3 deficiency in RIP-Cre neurons also results in delayed pubertal onset, an irregular estrous cycle, impaired fertility, and accelerated ovarian failure in female mice owing to the dysregulation of the hypothalamic-ovarian axis. We found that JMJD3 directly regulates Kiss1 gene expression by binding to the Kiss1 promoter and triggering H3K27me3 demethylation in the anteroventral periventricular (AVPV) nucleus. Further study confirmed that the aberrations arose from impaired kisspeptin signaling in the hypothalamic AVPV nucleus and subsequent estrogen deficiency. Estrogen replacement therapy can reverse obesity in mutant mice. Moreover, we demonstrated that Jmjd3 is an estrogen target gene in the hypothalamus. These results provide direct genetic and molecular evidence that JMJD3 is a key mediator for the kisspeptin-estrogen feedback loop.
Pubmed ID: 28323958 RIS Download
Mesh terms: Animals | Estrogens | Feedback, Physiological | Female | Hypothalamus, Anterior | Insulin | Integrases | Jumonji Domain-Containing Histone Demethylases | Kisspeptins | Male | Mice | Mice, Inbred C57BL | Mice, Transgenic | Neurons | Promoter Regions, Genetic | Rats | Reproduction
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