Specialized Cooperative Centers Program in Reproductive & Infertility Research

Genevieve Scott Neal-Perry, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Women's Health (Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility)
Assistant Professor, Dominick P. Purpura Department of Neuroscience

Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Jack and Pearl Resnick Campus
1300 Morris Park Avenue
Mazer Building, Room 320
Bronx, NY 10461

Phone: 718.430.3152
Fax: 718.430.8586
Email: sienna3598@aol.com 

Dr. Neal-Perry’s research focuses ondetermining the key cellular and molecular mechanisms by which hormonesregulate the neuroendocrine axis and female reproduction. One area ofparticular interest is the role of the neuroendocrine axis in femalereproductive senescence, especially the cellular events that alter the brain’sresponsiveness to ovarian steroids. Reproductive senescence in female rodentsand humans is heralded by reduced responsive of the hypothalamus to estrogenpositive feedback, resulting in a delayed and attenuated preovulatoryluteinizing hormone surge and frequent surge failure. There are several candidate neurotransmitter systems thatmight contribute to this age-related change in the LH surge. Our data suggest that age-relatedchanges in the LH surge are causally related to reduced excitatoryneurotransmission mediated by the excitatory neurotransmitters glutamate andkisspeptin. Additional studies have suggested that decreased kisspeptinavailabililty results in an imbalance in excitatory (glutamatergic; decreased)and inhibitory (GABAergic; increased) neurotransmission in thehypothalamus. We are now exploringthe possibility that reduced brain insulin growth factor-1 (IGF-1) signaling inthe aging brain impairs hypothalamic responsiveness to estrogen positivefeedback conditions. HypothalamicIGF-1 receptor signaling regulates female reproductive function andhypothalamic kisspeptin expression. Current experiments are determining whethercompromised hypothalamic IGF-1 receptor signaling in middle-aged femalesreduces the ability of estradiol to upregulate hypothalamic kisspeptinexpression in key areas of the hypothalamus, altering the balance of glutamateand GABA neurotransmission in middle-aged females exhibiting abnormal LHsurges. The laboratory is also investigating the effects of vitamin Ddeficiency on female fertility, reproductive aging, ovarian responsiveness togonadotropins, fertilization and embryo cleavage, and implantation.

Relevant Publications:

  1. Neal-PerryGS, Zeevalk, GD,Santoro, NF, and Etgen AM. Attenuation of Preoptic Area Glutamate ReleaseCorrelates with Reduced Luteinizing Hormone Secretion in Middle-Aged FemaleRats. Endocrinology146(10):4331-9 (2005).
  2. Neal-PerryG, Santoro N: Aging in Hypothalamic Pituitary-OvarianAxis (Chapter 51). Knobil and Neill’s Physiology of Reproduction, ThirdEdition, ed. Jimmy Neill, Elsevier. Volume 2: 2729-2755 (2005).
  3. Neal-PerryG and Santoro NF, Normal Aging and the MenopausalTransition: What to Expect. (Chapter 1) Menopausal Transition: The Interface Between Psychiatry andGynecology, ed. Soares Cand Warren M, Karger. Volume 175: 1-17 (2008).
  4. Neal-Perry GS, Zeevalk GD, Shu, J, and Etgen, AM. Restorationof the Luteinizing Hormone Surge in Middle-aged Rats by Altering the Balance ofGABA and Glutamate Transmission in the Medial Preoptic Area. Biology of Reproduction 79(5): 878-888(2008).
  5. Kapoor M, Neal-PerryGS and Pal L, "Reproductiveconcerns and success in older women. FemaleReproductive and Sexual Medicine, HumanaPress (2009), in press.
  6. Neal-Perry GS,Lebesgue D, Zeevalk GD, Shu J, and Etgen AM. The Excitatory Peptide Kisspeptin Restores the LuteinizingHormone Surge and Modulates Amino Acid Neurotransmission in the Medial PreopticArea. Endocrinology. 2009 Aug; 150(8):3699-3708 (2009)
  7. Lederman M, LebesgueD, Gonzalez V, Shu J, Merhi ZO, Etgen AM, and Neal-Perry G. Age-related LH surge dysfunction correlates withreduced responsiveness of hypothalamic anteroventral periventricular nucleuskisspeptin neurons to estradiol positive feedback in middle-aged rats.Neurpharmacology. 2009 June 24. [Epub ahead of print]
  8. Buyuk, E and Neal-Perry GS. Translational Research and Reproductive Senescence. The Female Patient2009 (In press)

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