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Luteinizing hormone and the aging brain

Megan Mey 1Sabina Bhatta 1Gemma Casadesus 2

Vitam Horm. 2021;115:89-104.doi: 10.1016/bs.vh.2020.12.005.


Fluctuations in luteinizing hormone (LH) release contribute to the development and maintenance of the reproductive system and become dysregulated during aging. Of note, increasing evidence supports extra-gonadal roles for LH within the CNS, particularly as it relates to cognition and plasticity in aging and age-related degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). However, despite increasing evidence that supports a link between this hormone and CNS function, the mechanisms underlying LH action within the brain and how they influence cognition and plasticity during the lifespan is poorly understood and, in fact, often in conflict. This chapter aims to provide an up-to-date review of the literature addressing the role of LH signaling in the context of CNS aging and disease and put forward a unifying hypothesis that may explain currently conflicting theories regarding the role of LHCGR signaling in CNS function and dysfunction in aging and disease.