Estrogen replacement therapy decreases some risk factors of the metabolic syndrome but increases the risk of some types of cancer. Tibolone (TIB) has shown similar neuroprotective effects as estrogens. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of TIB on metabolic parameters and the expression of sex hormone receptors in the CNS in ovariectomised rats fed with a hypercaloric diet. Sprague-Dawley female rats were ovariectomised and fed for 30 days with a standard diet (SD) or high-fat high-fructose diet (HFFD) and treated with TIB (1 mg/kg) or vehicle. At the end of the treatments, HFFD increased body weight, glucose tolerance, triglycerides and cholesterol levels, while TIB treatment decreased these parameters. Subsequently, the hippocampus, the hypothalamus and the frontal cortex were dissected. RT-PCR was performed for progesterone receptor (PR), androgen receptor (AR), estrogen receptors alpha and beta (ERα, ERβ), insulin receptor (IR) and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). HFFD altered the expression of sex hormone receptors in specific brain structures involved in the regulation of homeostasis and cognition, which highlights the importance of a healthy diet. In turn, TIB modulated the expression of these receptors, particularly in the hypothalamus.
Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier B.V.