Disruption of neuropsin mRNA expression via RNA interference facilitates the photoinduced increase in thyrotropin-stimulating subunit β in birds

Tyler J. Stevenson, Gregory F. Ball

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

It has long been known that the avian brain is capable of light detection independently of the eyes. The photoreceptive molecule neuropsin (OPN5) was identified in mammalian and avian brains, and shown to respond to biologically relevant light wavelengths. Whether OPN5 is functionally involved in light detection is unknown. Daylength plays a critical role in regulating the neuroendocrine control of reproduction in birds. The presence of light during a ‘photoinducible’ phase of the circadian cycle, which occurs 12–16 h after dawn, results in marked changes in hypothalamic gene expression. These changes ultimately control gonadotropin release from the pituitary gland that, in turn, stimulates gonadal development. In this study, we first measured OPN5 expression in the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH) in border canaries during the photoinducible period in relation to thyrotropin (TSH) β-subunit mRNA expression, which is implicated in the control of avian reproduction. Second, the knockdown of OPN5 via small interfering RNA antisense in the MBH revealed that there is an inhibitory input in the photoinduced regulation of TSHβ mRNA expression. Our data indicate that a decrease in OPN5 mRNA expression is associated with the facilitation in TSHβ mRNA expression in the MBH, a critical step for the light-induced increase in gonadal recrudescence. We hypothesise that the removal of an inhibitory input by OPN5 in birds may be a step that occurs during the photoinducible period. Given the distribution of OPN5 in the brain and periphery, this suggests a possible multifunctional role for light information in regulating other physiological processes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2859
Number of pages2865
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Volume36
Issue number6
Early online date8 Jul 2012
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2012

Fingerprint

Thyrotropin
RNA Interference
Birds
Light
Messenger RNA
Hypothalamus
Reproduction
Brain
Canaries
Physiological Phenomena
Pituitary Gland
Gonadotropins
Small Interfering RNA
Gene Expression
Recurrence

Keywords

  • canary
  • deiodinase
  • OPN5
  • photoperiod
  • reproduction
  • TSHβ

Cite this

Disruption of neuropsin mRNA expression via RNA interference facilitates the photoinduced increase in thyrotropin-stimulating subunit β in birds. / Stevenson, Tyler J.; Ball, Gregory F.

In: European Journal of Neuroscience, Vol. 36, No. 6, 09.2012, p. 2859.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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