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The Effect of Estrogen Replacement on Transthyretin Expression in the Liver

Rebecca Wright
Ohio Northern University

Alzheimer’s disease affects over 4.5 million Americans. Recently, estrogen therapy after menopause has been shown to correlate with a decreased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Transthyretin is a thyroid hormone binding protein, produced by the liver and choroids plexus, which could also play a role in preventing Alzheimer’s. In this investigation, we are trying to determine if estrogen replacement increases transthyretin expression. We planned to study this by placing animals in 4 experimental groups: ovariectomized with estrogen treatment, intact ovaries with estrogen treatment, ovariectomized with no estrogen treatment, and intact ovaries with no estrogen treatment. All groups’ transthyretin content will be analyzed after 5 weeks using ELISAs and protein assays. The ovariectomized with estrogen treatment and ovariectomized without treatment groups will also be studied at 2 weeks. Results will be compared using two-way ANOVAs with treatment and time as the independent variables. Preliminary results show no significant effect of estrogen replacement on transthyretin expression in the liver. This could be due to the hormonal self regulation that goes on within the animal.

ONU Student Research Colloquium