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Gonadotropin-releasing hormone receptor
Symbol(s): GNRHR GnRH-R; LRHR;
Locus: 4 q21.2
EC number [1]
EntrezGene 2798
OMIM 138850
RefSeq NM_000406
UniProt P30968

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone receptor (GNRHR) is a member of the seven-transmembrane, G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) family. It is expressed on the surface of pituitary gonadotrope cells as well as lymphocytes, breast, ovary, and prostate.


Following binding of Gonadotropin releasing hormone (GNRH), GNRHR associates with G-proteins that activate a phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns)-calcium second messenger system. Activation of GNRHR ultimately causes the release of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).


Alternative splicing of the GNRHR gene, GNRHR, results in multiple transcript variants encoding different isoforms. More than 18 transcription initiation sites in the 5' region and multiple polyA signals in the 3' region have been identified for GNRHR.


The GNRHR responds to GNRH as well as to GNRH agonists. Agonists stimulate the receptor, however prolonged exposure leads to a downregulation effect resulting in hypogonadism, an effect that is often medically utilized. GNRH antagonists block the receptor and inhibit gonadotropin release. GNRHRs are further regulated by the presence of sex hormones, inhibin, and activin.

Clinical implications

Defects in the GNRHR are a cause of hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (HH).

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