Summary. Metabolism of PGE-2 and PGF-2α by cytosolic fractions (100 000 g supernatant) of the uterus, oviduct and lung of rabbits treated with hCG and endotoxin (20 μg/kg) was measured. Endotoxin caused immediate decreases in metabolism of both PGs by uterus at 1 h, and these decreases became significant at 2 h for PGE-2 and 6 h for PGF-2α. The metabolism of both PGs remained depressed throughout the 24 h study. Metabolism by oviduct tissue differed in that at 1 h metabolism of both PGs increased but then remained depressed between 2 and 24 h. Metabolism of PGs by lung also showed a different pattern: that of PGE-2 was depressed only briefly (at 2 h), while that of PGF-2α was consistently depressed between 2 and 24 h. Pre-treatment with hCG did not affect the response: tissues from animals killed 6 h after endotoxin but not given hCG responded like those from animals treated with endotoxin 24 h after hCG and killed 6 h later. Much of the increased PG levels in venous drainage after endotoxin treatment can be explained by depressed ability of cells to metabolize PGs.
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