The luteinizing hormone/chorionic gonadotropin receptor (LHCGR) is essential for fertility in men and women. LHCGR binds luteinizing hormone (LH) as well as the highly homologous chorionic gonadotropin. Signaling from LHCGR is required for steroidogenesis and gametogenesis in males and females and for sexual differentiation in the male. The importance of LHCGR in reproductive physiology is underscored by the large number of naturally occurring inactivating and activating mutations in the receptor that result in reproductive disorders. Consequently, several genetically modified mouse models have been developed for the study of LHCGR function. They include targeted deletion of LH and LHCGR that mimic inactivating mutations in hormone and receptor, expression of a constitutively active mutant in LHCGR that mimics activating mutations associated with familial male-limited precocious puberty and transgenic models of LH and hCG overexpression. This review summarizes the salient findings from these models and their utility in understanding the physiological and pathological consequences of loss and gain of function in LHCGR signaling.



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