In the present study, an attempt was made to correlate the neuronal responsiveness of individual preoptic-septal (POA/S) units to iontophoretically applied GnRH with the onset of sexual receptivity. In both behavioral and electrophysiological studies, ovariectomized, estrogen-primed rats were used. In behaviorally tested rats, lordosis quotients (LQ) were determined at varying times following progesterone (P) injection. For electrophysiological studies, P was given 1 hr after the start of recording. GnRH was iontophoretically applied for 30 sec at 16 nA on spontaneously discharging cells. A unit was deemed excited or inhibited if a repeatable 30% change in discharge rate was observed. From 2-10 hours as the LQ increased from 17 to 90 the total number of GnRH sensitive cells did also. The majority of responsive cells were excited by the peptide. As receptivity displayed a sharp increase from 2 to 6 hours the mean responsiveness of cells excited by GnRH was significantly elevated over inhibitory responses. These findings confirm the E/P biasing effect on POA/S unit responses to GnRH. Moreover, they suggest that a dynamic relationship exists between GnRH responses at the cellular level and sexual behavior throughout the course of steroid-induced receptivity.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience