Sex steroid hormone synthesis, metabolism, and the effects on the mammalian olfactory system.

Journal Article (Journal Article;Review)

Sex steroid hormones influence olfactory-mediated social behaviors, and it is generally hypothesized that these effects result from circulating hormones and/or neurosteroids synthesized in the brain. However, it is unclear whether sex steroid hormones are synthesized in the olfactory epithelium or the olfactory bulb, and if they can modulate the activity of the olfactory sensory neurons. Here, we review important discoveries related to the metabolism of sex steroids in the mouse olfactory epithelium and olfactory bulb, along with potential areas of future research. We summarize current knowledge regarding the expression, neuroanatomical distribution, and biological activity of the steroidogenic enzymes, sex steroid receptors, and proteins that are important to the metabolism of these hormones and reflect on their potential to influence early olfactory processing. We also review evidence related to the effects of sex steroid hormones on the development and activity of olfactory sensory neurons. By better understanding how these hormones are metabolized and how they act both at the periphery and olfactory bulb level, we can better appreciate the complexity of the olfactory system and discover potential similarities and differences in early olfactory processing between sexes.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Abaffy, T; Lu, H-Y; Matsunami, H

Published Date

  • January 2023

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 391 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 19 - 42

PubMed ID

  • 36401093

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9676892

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1432-0878

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s00441-022-03707-9


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Germany