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Health Sciences profile

Dr Michael Pankhurst

PositionResearch Fellow
DepartmentDepartment of Anatomy
QualificationsBSc(Hons) PhD(Tas)
Research summaryThe role of anti-Mullerian hormone in female reproduction

Research

Dr Pankhurst's research seeks to determine the role of anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) in female reproduction. AMH is known for its classical role in embryonic sex determination in males but in recent years AMH been discovered to regulate the way that the ovary uses its supply of eggs. This has implications for female fertility because the entire lifetime supply of eggs is produced before birth and its depletion leads to menopause and infertility.

Research interests:

  1. Investigating the mechanism behind the miscarriage caused by over-expression of AMH in transgenic female mice
  2. Determining the molecular mechanisms of AMH action in the ovary
  3. Examining how the inactive AMH precursor (proAMH) becomes converted to the active form (AMHN,C) in the ovary

The research involves biochemical techniques such as enzyme-linked immunoassay and western blotting, immunohistochemistry to determine cellular localisation of signalling molecules, organ culture of whole ovaries to investigate ovarian follicle development and pregnancy studies in transgenic animals.

This research is currently funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand.

Publications

Dennis, N. A., Houghton, L. A., Pankhurst, M. W., Harper, M. J., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). Acute supplementation with high dose Vitamin D3 increases serum anti-Müllerian hormone in young women. Nutrients, 9, 719. doi: 10.3390/nu9070719

Kawagishi, Y., Pankhurst, M. W., Nakatani, Y., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). Anti-Müllerian hormone signalling is influenced by Follistatin 288, but not fourteen other Transforming growth factor beta superfamily regulators. Molecular Reproduction & Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/mrd.22828

Chong, Y. H., Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). The testicular hormones AMH, InhB, INSL3, and testosterone can be independently deficient in older men. Journals of Gerontology Series A, 72(4), 548-553. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glw143

Pankhurst, M. W. (2017). A putative role for anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) in optimising ovarian reserve expenditure. Journal of Endocrinology, 233(1), R1-R13. doi: 10.1530/joe-16-0522

McLennan, I. S., & Pankhurst, M. W. (2017). Is the understanding of AMH being confounded by study designs that do not adequately reflect that it is an atypical hormone? Human Reproduction, 32(1), 14-17. doi: 10.1093/humrep/dew305

Chapter in Book - Research

McLennan, I. S., Chong, Y. H., Kawagishi, Y., & Pankhurst, M. W. (2016). A critical evaluation of whether criculating anti-Müllerian hormone is a hormone in adults, with special reference to its putative roles in men. In D. B. Seifer & R. Tal (Eds.), Anti-Müllerian hormone: Biology, role in ovarian function and clinical significance. (pp. 209-225). New York: Nova Science.

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Journal - Research Article

Dennis, N. A., Houghton, L. A., Pankhurst, M. W., Harper, M. J., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). Acute supplementation with high dose Vitamin D3 increases serum anti-Müllerian hormone in young women. Nutrients, 9, 719. doi: 10.3390/nu9070719

Chong, Y. H., Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). The testicular hormones AMH, InhB, INSL3, and testosterone can be independently deficient in older men. Journals of Gerontology Series A, 72(4), 548-553. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glw143

Kawagishi, Y., Pankhurst, M. W., Nakatani, Y., & McLennan, I. S. (2017). Anti-Müllerian hormone signalling is influenced by Follistatin 288, but not fourteen other Transforming growth factor beta superfamily regulators. Molecular Reproduction & Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/mrd.22828

Pankhurst, M. W., Clark, C. A., Zarek, J., Laskin, C. A., & McLennan, I. S. (2016). Changes in circulating ProAMH and total AMH during healthy pregnancy and post-partum: A longitudinal study. PLoS ONE, 11(9), e0162509. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0162509

Pankhurst, M. W., Chong, Y. H., & McLennan, I. S. (2016). Relative levels of the proprotein and cleavage-activated form of circulating human anti-Müllerian hormone are sexually dimorphic and variable during the life cycle. Physiological Reports, 4(9), e12783. doi: 10.14814/phy2.12783

Pankhurst, M. W., & Chong, Y. H. (2016). Variation in circulating antimüllerian hormone precursor during the periovulatory and acute postovulatory phases of the human ovarian cycle. Fertility & Sterility, 106(5), 1238-1243. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2016.06.010

Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2016). A specific immunoassay for proAMH, the uncleaved proprotein precursor of anti-Müllerian hormone. Molecular & Cellular Endocrinology, 419, 165-171. doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2015.10.013

Pankhurst, M. W., Leathart, B.-L. A., Batchelor, N. J., & McLennan, I. S. (2016). The anti-Müllerian hormone precursor (proAMH) is not converted to the receptor-competent form (AMHN,C) in the circulating blood of mice. Endocrinology, 157(4), 1622-1629. doi: 10.1210/en.2015-1834

Chong, Y. H., Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2015). The daily profiles of circulating AMH and INSL3 in men are distinct from the other testicular hormones, Inhibin B and testosterone. PLoS ONE, 10(7), e0133637. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0133637

McLennan, I. S., & Pankhurst, M. W. (2015). Anti-Müllerian hormone is a gonadal cytokine with two circulating forms and cryptic actions. Journal of Endocrinology, 226, R45-R57. doi: 10.1530/joe-15-0206

Pankhurst, M. W., Chong, Y. H., & McLennan, I. S. (2014). Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay measurements of antimüllerian hormone (AMH) in human blood are a composite of the uncleaved and bioactive cleaved forms of AMH. Fertility & Sterility, 101(3), 846-850. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2013.12.009

Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2013). Human blood contains both the uncleaved precursor of anti-Müllerian hormone and a complex of the NH2- and COOH-terminal peptides. American Journal of Physiology: Endocrinology & Metabolism, 305, E1241-E1247. doi: 10.1152/ajpendo.00395.2013

Pankhurst, M. W., & McLennan, I. S. (2012). Inhibin B and anti-Müllerian hormone/Müllerian-inhibiting substance may contribute to the male bias in autism. Translational Psychiatry, 2, e148. doi: 10.1038/tp.2012.72

Pankhurst, M. W., Gell, D. A., Butler, C. W., Kirkcaldie, M. T. K., West, A. K., & Chung, R. S. (2012). Metallothionein (MT) -I and MT-II expression are induced and cause zinc sequestration in the liver after brain injury. PLoS ONE, 7(2), e31185. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031185

Pankhurst, M. W., Bennett, W., Kirkcaldie, M. T. K., West, A. K., & Chung, R. S. (2011). Increased circulating leukocyte numbers and altered macrophage phenotype correlate with the altered immune response to brain injury in metallothionein (MT) -l/ll null mutant mice. Journal of Neuroinflammation, 8, 172. doi: 10.1186/1742-2094-8-172

Leung, Y. K. J., Pankhurst, M., Dunlop, S. A., Ray, S., Dittmann, J., Eaton, E. D., … Chung, R. S. (2010). Metallothionein induces a regenerative reactive astrocyte phenotype via JAK/STAT and RhoA signalling pathways. Experimental Neurology, 221, 98-106. doi: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2009.10.006

Chung, R. S., Leung, Y. K., Butler, C. W., Chen, Y., Eaton, E. D., Pankhurst, M. W., … Guillemin, G. J. (2009). Metallothionein treatment attenuates microglial activation and expression of neurotoxic quinolinic acid following traumatic brain injury. Neurotoxicity Research, 15(4), 381-389. doi: 10.1007/s12640-009-9044-y

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Journal - Research Other

Pankhurst, M. W. (2017). A putative role for anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) in optimising ovarian reserve expenditure. Journal of Endocrinology, 233(1), R1-R13. doi: 10.1530/joe-16-0522

McLennan, I. S., & Pankhurst, M. W. (2017). Is the understanding of AMH being confounded by study designs that do not adequately reflect that it is an atypical hormone? Human Reproduction, 32(1), 14-17. doi: 10.1093/humrep/dew305

McLennan, I. S., & Pankhurst, M. W. (2016). Methodological considerations in measuring different AMH cleavage forms using ELISA: Validity of proAMH ELISA. Molecular Human Reproduction, 22(5), 373. doi: 10.1093/molehr/gaw021

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