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Endogenous circannual rhythm in LH secretion: insight from signal analysis coupled with mathematical modelling

Abstract : In sheep as in many vertebrates, the seasonal pattern of reproduction is timed by the annual photoperiodic cycle, characterized by seasonal changes in the daylength. The photoperiodic information is translated into a circadian profile of melatonin secretion. After multiple neuronal relays (within the hypothalamus), melatonin impacts GnRH (gonadotrophin releasing hormone) secretion that in turn controls ovarian cyclicity. The pattern of GnRH secretion is mirrored into that of LH (luteinizing hormone) secretion, whose plasmatic level can be easily measured. We addressed the question of whether there exists an endogenous circannual rhythm in a tropical sheep population that exhibits clear seasonal ovarian activity when ewes are subjected to temperate latitudes. We based our analysis on LH time series collected in the course of 3 years from ewes subjected to a constant photoperiodic regime. Due to intra- and inter- animal variability and unequal sampling times, the existence of an endogenous rhythm is not straightforward. We have used time-frequency signal processing methods to extract hidden rhythms from the data. To further investigate the LF (low frequency) and HF (high frequency) components of the signals, we have designed a mathematical model of LH plasmatic level accounting for the effect of experimental sampling times. The model enables us to confirm the existence of an endogenous circannual rhythm, to investigate the action mechanism of photoperiod on the pulsatile pattern of LH secretion (control of the interpulse interval) and to conclude that the HF component is mainly due to the experimental sampling protocol.
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Submitted on : Thursday, March 5, 2009 - 4:33:56 PM
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Alexandre Vidal, Claire Médigue, Benoit Malpaux, Frédérique Clément. Endogenous circannual rhythm in LH secretion: insight from signal analysis coupled with mathematical modelling. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 2009, 367 (1908), pp.4759-4777. ⟨10.1098/rsta.2009.0136⟩. ⟨inria-00366083⟩



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