The study was designed to compare the direct effect of three prolactin-like hormones on steroidogenesis of ovine luteal cells collected at day 40-45 of pregnancy. 100 ng/ml of ovine placental lactogen or 100 ng/ml of ovine growth hormone or 100 ng/ml of ovine prolactin were added to the media of luteal cell cultures. After 48 h incubation, all cultures were terminated and the media were frozen until further steroid analysis. To determine to what extent growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL) and lactogen (PL) regulate the activity of 3$-HSD, an enzyme involved in progesterone synthesis, the classical steroidal competitive inhibitor of 3$-HSD trilostane, was investigated for its effects on basal and GH-, PRL-, and PL-stimulated progesterone biosynthesis since there is a possibility that the luteotropic effect of these hormones are mediated via 3$-HSD. oPL resulted in an increase of progesterone secretion in a statistically significant manner, while GH or PRL had no effect on progesterone secretion. A decrease in progesterone secretion as an effect of 100 mM trilostane was observed in all culture types. An explanation for the luteotropic effect of PL and the lack of this effect for GH is that the GH receptor associates with a different molecule within the ovarian tissue and forms a heterodimeric receptor for PL, and the possibility that physiological effects of native oPL may be mediated through its binding to specific PL receptors, which have low affinities for oGH and oPRL.