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Gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulates the release of FSH and LH. It helps keep hormone levels stable as well as having health benefits. Read more below to learn about this hormone.

What is Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone?

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) stimulates the release of follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone. These hormones are essential for normal reproductive function [R].

It is important to control sperm production in males and egg release (ovulation) in women. GnRH levels are very low before puberty; however, as puberty approaches, GnRH levels increase to prepare for sexual maturity [R].

GnRH is produced in the hypothalamus. Too little GnRH can lead to underdevelopment of the testes or ovaries, resulting in infertility. Treatments with GnRH and its variants can be used in humans, as well as animals [R].

Health Benefits of GnRH

1) Gonadotropin-releasing Hormone Fights Cancer

In mice, a vaccine containing GnRH may help delay prostate cancer and slow tumor growth [R].

GnRH antagonist therapies are a good treatment option for patients with prostate cancer [R].

In prostate cancer patients treated with a GnRH medication, body image did not significantly worsen [R].

Chemotherapy affects fertility; GnRH treatment during chemotherapy helps protect gonadal function [R].

2) Gonadotropin-releasing Hormone Increases Fertility

In cows, GnRH treatment may benefit reproductive efficiency by increasing the pregnancy rate when using artificial insemination [R].

In Holstein cows, GnRH improved the efficiency of embryo production during early lactation [R].

GnRH can also help to avoid ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, and patients had a higher clinical pregnancy rate [R].

In dairy cows, GnRH can be used as a treatment option for cows with ovarian cysts [R].

In mice with polycystic ovary syndrome, GnRH can restore ovulation [R].

3) Gonadotropin-releasing Hormone Relieves Problems with Puberty

GnRH, which suppresses puberty, can effectively help gender dysphoric adolescents by reducing testicular volume in males and breast development in females [R].

For girls with precocious (early) puberty, a therapy of GnRH and growth hormone benefitted the final height of the girls better than GnRH alone [R].

A GnRH analog treatment helped reduce the number of seizures in a 7-year-old girl with precocious puberty [R].

4) Gonadotropin-releasing Hormone Reduces Pain

GnRH in addition to progesterone-estrogen therapy is effective in pelvic pain relief after surgery [R].

Side Effects

In Spanish girls with precocious puberty, GnRH therapy increased BMI than girls without GnRH therapy [R].

GnRH antagonist and GnRH agonist treatments are associated with ectopic pregnancies (where the embryo implants outside the uterus) [R].

GnRH during assisted reproductive technology cycles causes inflammation, which may cause flare-ups in women with inflammatory conditions [R].

Treatment with GnRH analogs may cause severe dysmotility, a condition where the muscles in the gastrointestinal tract stop functioning correctly, causing digestion to become impaired [R].

For the treatment of advanced prostate cancer in male patients, GnRH treatment-related severe cardiovascular side effects were higher than degarelix treatment [R].


  • Human stem cells can differentiate into GnRH-producing cells, which can benefit research about GnRH and its relationship with puberty [R].
  • We obtained 24 (52.1%) ongoing clinical pregnancies. None of the patients developed OHSS [R].
  • GnRHa treatment caused a decrease in testicular volume in 43 of 49 male-to-female subjects. In one of four female-to-male subjects who presented at Tanner breast stage 2, breast development completely regressed [R].
  • Gonadotropins and sex steroid levels suppressed within 3 months [R].
  • Visual analog scale pain score decreased significantly for both treatments [R].

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