Interactions Of Estrogen And The Neurotrophins

The cascade of molecular events in the brain that follows estrogen activation of the neural ER are largely unknown, as are the signaling pathways mediating the differentiative actions of estrogen and the neurotrophins in the CNS. A critical and as yet unanswered question is whether the developmental actions of estrogen in the brain, such as enhancement of neurite growth and differentiation, are mediated directly or as a consequence of a large cascade of intracellular events initiated by interactions of estrogen with endogenous growth factors such as the neurotrophins and their receptors (1,100). The findings of estrogen and neurotrophin receptor co-expression in the developing forebrain (11,13) and of putative EREs in the genes for NGF (13), BDNF (101), NT-3 (M. Singh and D. Toran-Allerand, unpublished observations), p75 (11), and trkA (24) suggest that estrogen

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