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Cell Growth & Differentiation Vol. 11, 255-260, May 2000
© 2000 American Association for Cancer Research


Articles

Genistein Regulation of Transforming Growth Factor-{alpha}, Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF), and EGF Receptor Expression in the Rat Uterus and Vagina1

Nadine M. Brown2 and Coral A. Lamartiniere3

Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, and University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama 35294

Abstract

Epidemiological reports and laboratory data have associated soy and genistein with reduced incidence of uterine, breast, and prostate cancers, cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis, and lower total blood cholesterol. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of genistein in the uterus and vagina of rats, focusing our attention on the distribution of transforming growth factor (TGF) {alpha}, epidermal growth factor (EGF), and EGF receptor. A pharmacological dose of genistein (500 µg/g body weight) injected in rats on days 16, 18, and 20 postpartum resulted in significant uterine wet weight gain, with hypertrophy of the luminal and glandular epithelium of the uteri, and squamous epithelium of the vagina in 21-day-old animals. At 50 days of age, hypertrophy was no longer evident in the uterus and vagina. Prepubertal genistein treatment resulted in significantly increased EGF immunostaining in individual stromal cells and reduced EGF receptor immunostaining in blood vessels of the uterus. Genistein-treated rats had decreased TGF-{alpha} immunostaining in glandular and luminal epithelium and a slight increase in EGF receptor immunostaining in stromal cells of the uterus. This suggests paracrine interaction between cells elevating the level of EGF ligand in the stroma and the EGF receptor in the luminal and glandular epithelium, resulting in uterine hypertrophy. In the vagina, genistein did not cause significant alterations to the EGF-signaling pathway in 21- and 50-day-old rats. We conclude that pharmacological doses of genistein during the prepubertal period can modulate the EGF-signaling pathway in the uterus and exert a uterotrophic response in a short-term manner.




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HOME HELP FEEDBACK SUBSCRIPTIONS ARCHIVE SEARCH TABLE OF CONTENTS
Cancer Research Clinical Cancer Research
Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention Molecular Cancer Therapeutics
Molecular Cancer Research Cell Growth & Differentiation
Copyright © 2000 by the American Association of Cancer Research.