Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Effiong Otukonyong

Committee Members

Sharon Campbell, Edward Onyango, Burl Williams,


One of the numerous complications of obesity is infertility. Leptin has been shown to reverse infertility; however, exact mechanism is poorly understood. Recent evidence indicates Ecadherin/ β-catenin complex, which is a structural constituent of adherens junction, is expressed in the rat ovary during folliculogenesis. We hypothesized that systemic leptin modulates the expression of E-cadherin and β-catenin in dietary-induced obese infertile rats to reverse infertility. Female Sprague-Dawley rats were fed either regular chow diet (RCD) (n=6) or high fat diet (HFD) (n=14). Oestrus cycles were monitored daily until their cycles became irregular. 100 ug/ml of leptin was given intraperitoneally to HFD-fed rats (n=5) with irregular cycles. The control rats HFD (n=9) and RCD received saline. Leptin treatment restored regular estrous cycle and increased the expression of E-cadherin and β-catenin in all the 5 rats (HFD+Leptin). This could represent the mechanism by which leptin reverses infertility in obese infertile rats.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.