Yeast mating pheromone activates mammalian gonadotrophs: evolutionary conservation of a reproductive hormone?

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Science  24 Dec 1982:
Vol. 218, Issue 4579, pp. 1323-1325
DOI: 10.1126/science.6293058


alpha-Factor, a tridecapeptide mating pheromone of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae), has extensive sequence homology with the hypothalamic decapeptide gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Both synthetic and natural preparations of alpha-mating factor were found to bind specifically to rat pituitary GnRH receptors and to stimulate the release of luteinizing hormone from cultured gonadotrophs. The ability of the yeast pheromone to reproduce the biological actions of GnRH in the mammalian pituitary gland indicates that the structural and functional properties of GnRH-related peptides may have been highly conserved during evolution.