Dynamic expression of epoxyeicosatrienoic acid synthesizing and metabolizing enzymes in the primate corpus luteum

G. Irusta, M. J. Murphy, W. D. Perez, J. D. Hennebold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EpETrEs), produced from arachidonic acid via cytochrome P450 (CYP) epoxygenases, regulate inflammation, angiogenesis, cellular proliferation, ion transport and steroidogenesis. EpETrE actions are regulated through their metabolism to diols (dihydroxyeicosatrienoic acids; DiHETrE) via the enzyme soluble epoxide hydrolase (EPHX2). We set out to determine, therefore, whether EpETrE generating (epoxygenases CYP2C8, 2C9, 2C19, 2J2, 1A2 and 3A4) and metabolizing (EPHX2) enzymes are expressed in the primate corpus luteum (CL). CL were isolated from rhesus macaques during the early (day 3-5 post-LH surge), mid (day 6-8), mid-late (day 10-12), late (day 14-16) and very-late (day 17-19: menses) luteal phase of natural menstrual cycles. EPHX2 mRNA levels peaked in mid-late CL (5-fold when compared with early CL, P < 0.05) and remained elevated in the late CL. Ablation of pituitary LH secretion and luteal steroid synthesis significantly reduced (P < 0.05) EPHX2 mRNA levels in the mid-late CL, with progestin replacement being insufficient to restore its level of expression to control values. EPHX2 protein was localized to large and small luteal cells, as well as vascular endothelial cells. The EpETrE-generating CYP epoxygenase 2J2, 2C9 and 3A4 genes were also expressed in the macaque CL. While CYP2J2 mRNA levels did not significantly change through the luteal phase, CYP2C9 and CYP3A4 levels were significantly (P < 0.05) higher in the mid-late phase when compared with the early phase. CYP2C9, 2J2 and 3A4 proteins were each localized to the large luteal cells, with 2C9 and 2J2 also being present in the small luteal, stromal and endothelial cells. These studies demonstrate for the first time that an EpETrE generating and metabolizing system exists in the primate CL, with the latter being regulated by LH and steroid hormone(s).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)541-548
Number of pages8
JournalMolecular Human Reproduction
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2007


  • Corpus luteum
  • Epoxyeicosatrienoic acid
  • Epoxygenase
  • Ovary
  • Soluble epoxide hydrolase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Embryology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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