Rhythmic melatonin secretion does not correlate with the expression of arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase, inducible cyclic amp early repressor, period1 or cryptochrome1 mRNA in the sheep pineal

J D Johnston, R Bashforth, A Diack, H Andersson, G A Lincoln, D G Hazlerigg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The pineal gland, through nocturnal melatonin, acts as a neuroendocrine transducer of daily and seasonal time. Melatonin synthesis is driven by rhythmic activation of the rate-limiting enzyme, arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT). In ungulates, AA-NAT mRNA is constitutively high throughout the 24-h cycle, and melatonin production is primarily controlled through effects on AA-NAT enzyme activity; this is in contrast to dominant transcriptional control in rodents. To determine whether there has been a selective loss of circadian control of AA-NAT mRNA expression in the sheep pineal, we measured the expression of other genes known to be rhythmic in rodents (inducible cAMP early repressor ICER, the circadian clock genes Period1 and Cryptochrome1, as well as AA-NAT). We first assayed gene expression in pineal glands collected from Soay sheep adapted to short days (Light: dark, 8-h: 16-h), and killed at 4-h intervals through 24-h. We found no evidence for rhythmic expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 under these conditions, whilst Period1 showed a low amplitude rhythm of expression, with higher values during the dark period. In a second group of animals, lights out was delayed by 8-h during the final 24-h sampling period, a manipulation that causes an immediate shortening of the period of melatonin secretion. This did not significantly affect the expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 in the pineal, whilst a slight suppressive effect on overall Per1 levels was observed. The attenuated response to photoperiod change appears to be specific to the ovine pineal, as the first long day induced rapid changes of Period1 and ICER expression in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei and pituitary pars tuberalis, respectively.

Overall, our data suggest a general reduction of circadian control of transcript abundance in the ovine pineal gland, consistent with a marked evolutionary divergence in the mechanism regulating melatonin production between terrestrial ruminants and fossorial rodents. (C) 2004 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)789-795
Number of pages7
JournalNeuroscience
Volume124
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • ovine
  • clock gene
  • photoperiod
  • circadian rhythm
  • RAT PINEAL
  • SUPRACHIASMATIC NUCLEUS
  • CIRCADIAN EXPRESSION
  • GENE-EXPRESSION
  • CLOCK GENES
  • PROTEASOMAL PROTEOLYSIS
  • SIGNAL-TRANSDUCTION
  • BOVINE PINEALOCYTES
  • PHOTOPERIODIC TIME
  • NOCTURNAL INCREASE

Cite this

Rhythmic melatonin secretion does not correlate with the expression of arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase, inducible cyclic amp early repressor, period1 or cryptochrome1 mRNA in the sheep pineal. / Johnston, J D ; Bashforth, R ; Diack, A ; Andersson, H ; Lincoln, G A ; Hazlerigg, D G .

In: Neuroscience, Vol. 124, 2004, p. 789-795.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Diack, A

AU - Andersson, H

AU - Lincoln, G A

AU - Hazlerigg, D G

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N2 - The pineal gland, through nocturnal melatonin, acts as a neuroendocrine transducer of daily and seasonal time. Melatonin synthesis is driven by rhythmic activation of the rate-limiting enzyme, arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT). In ungulates, AA-NAT mRNA is constitutively high throughout the 24-h cycle, and melatonin production is primarily controlled through effects on AA-NAT enzyme activity; this is in contrast to dominant transcriptional control in rodents. To determine whether there has been a selective loss of circadian control of AA-NAT mRNA expression in the sheep pineal, we measured the expression of other genes known to be rhythmic in rodents (inducible cAMP early repressor ICER, the circadian clock genes Period1 and Cryptochrome1, as well as AA-NAT). We first assayed gene expression in pineal glands collected from Soay sheep adapted to short days (Light: dark, 8-h: 16-h), and killed at 4-h intervals through 24-h. We found no evidence for rhythmic expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 under these conditions, whilst Period1 showed a low amplitude rhythm of expression, with higher values during the dark period. In a second group of animals, lights out was delayed by 8-h during the final 24-h sampling period, a manipulation that causes an immediate shortening of the period of melatonin secretion. This did not significantly affect the expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 in the pineal, whilst a slight suppressive effect on overall Per1 levels was observed. The attenuated response to photoperiod change appears to be specific to the ovine pineal, as the first long day induced rapid changes of Period1 and ICER expression in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei and pituitary pars tuberalis, respectively.Overall, our data suggest a general reduction of circadian control of transcript abundance in the ovine pineal gland, consistent with a marked evolutionary divergence in the mechanism regulating melatonin production between terrestrial ruminants and fossorial rodents. (C) 2004 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

AB - The pineal gland, through nocturnal melatonin, acts as a neuroendocrine transducer of daily and seasonal time. Melatonin synthesis is driven by rhythmic activation of the rate-limiting enzyme, arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT). In ungulates, AA-NAT mRNA is constitutively high throughout the 24-h cycle, and melatonin production is primarily controlled through effects on AA-NAT enzyme activity; this is in contrast to dominant transcriptional control in rodents. To determine whether there has been a selective loss of circadian control of AA-NAT mRNA expression in the sheep pineal, we measured the expression of other genes known to be rhythmic in rodents (inducible cAMP early repressor ICER, the circadian clock genes Period1 and Cryptochrome1, as well as AA-NAT). We first assayed gene expression in pineal glands collected from Soay sheep adapted to short days (Light: dark, 8-h: 16-h), and killed at 4-h intervals through 24-h. We found no evidence for rhythmic expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 under these conditions, whilst Period1 showed a low amplitude rhythm of expression, with higher values during the dark period. In a second group of animals, lights out was delayed by 8-h during the final 24-h sampling period, a manipulation that causes an immediate shortening of the period of melatonin secretion. This did not significantly affect the expression of ICER, AA-NAT or Cryptochrome1 in the pineal, whilst a slight suppressive effect on overall Per1 levels was observed. The attenuated response to photoperiod change appears to be specific to the ovine pineal, as the first long day induced rapid changes of Period1 and ICER expression in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei and pituitary pars tuberalis, respectively.Overall, our data suggest a general reduction of circadian control of transcript abundance in the ovine pineal gland, consistent with a marked evolutionary divergence in the mechanism regulating melatonin production between terrestrial ruminants and fossorial rodents. (C) 2004 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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KW - clock gene

KW - photoperiod

KW - circadian rhythm

KW - RAT PINEAL

KW - SUPRACHIASMATIC NUCLEUS

KW - CIRCADIAN EXPRESSION

KW - GENE-EXPRESSION

KW - CLOCK GENES

KW - PROTEASOMAL PROTEOLYSIS

KW - SIGNAL-TRANSDUCTION

KW - BOVINE PINEALOCYTES

KW - PHOTOPERIODIC TIME

KW - NOCTURNAL INCREASE

M3 - Article

VL - 124

SP - 789

EP - 795

JO - Neuroscience

JF - Neuroscience

SN - 0306-4522

ER -