The epizootiology and pathogenesis of thyroid hyperplasia in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) in Lake Ontario. (1/4031)

The thyroid glands of coho salmon collected at different stages of their anadromous migration exhibited progressive and extensive hyperplasia and hypertrophy. The incidence of overt nodule formation rose from 5% in fish collected in August to 24% in fish collected in October. The histological picture of the goiters was similar to that found in thiourea-treated teleosts and thiouracil-treated mammals. There was a concomitant, significant decrease in serum thyroxine and triiodothyronine values between September and October (thyroxine, 1.0+/-0.3 mug/100 ml and 0.4 mug/100 ml in September and October, respectively; triiodothyronine, 400.3+/-51.6 ng/100 ml and 80.2 ng/100 ml in September and October, respectively) and marked hypertrophy and hyperplasia of thyrotrophs. These data indicate a progressive hypothyroid condition which, although it may be linked to iodide deficiency, may well be enhanced by other environmental factors. The evidence for involvement of other factors is discussed.  (+info)

Central peptidergic neurons are hyperactive during collateral sprouting and inhibition of activity suppresses sprouting. (2/4031)

Little is known regarding the effect of chronic changes in neuronal activity on the extent of collateral sprouting by identified CNS neurons. We have investigated the relationship between activity and sprouting in oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (VP) neurons of the hypothalamic magnocellular neurosecretory system (MNS). Uninjured MNS neurons undergo a robust collateral-sprouting response that restores the axon population of the neural lobe (NL) after a lesion of the contralateral MNS (). Simultaneously, lesioned rats develop chronic urinary hyperosmolality indicative of heightened neurosecretory activity. We therefore tested the hypothesis that sprouting MNS neurons are hyperactive by measuring changes in cell and nuclear diameters, OT and VP mRNA pools, and axonal cytochrome oxidase activity (COX). Each of these measures was significantly elevated during the period of most rapid axonal growth between 1 and 4 weeks after the lesion, confirming that both OT and VP neurons are hyperactive while undergoing collateral sprouting. In a second study the hypothesis that chronic inhibition of neuronal activity would interfere with the sprouting response was tested. Chronic hyponatremia (CH) was induced 3 d before the hypothalamic lesion and sustained for 4 weeks to suppress neurosecretory activity. CH abolished the lesion-induced increases in OT and VP mRNA pools and virtually eliminated measurable COX activity in MNS terminals. Counts of the total number of axon profiles in the NL revealed that CH also prevented axonal sprouting from occurring. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that increased neuronal activity is required for denervation-induced collateral sprouting to occur in the MNS.  (+info)

Glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity in neurons and pituitary cells implicated in reproductive functions in rainbow trout: a double immunohistochemical study. (3/4031)

In order to identify the nature of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-expressing neurons and pituitary cells that potentially mediate the negative effects of stress on reproductive performance, double immunohistochemical stainings were performed in the brain and pituitary of the rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). To avoid possible cross-reactions during the double staining studies, combinations of primary antibodies raised in different species were used, and we report here the generation of an antibody raised in guinea pig against the rainbow trout glucocorticoid receptor (rtGR). The results obtained in vitellogenic females showed that GnRH-positive neurons in the caudal telencephalon/anterior preoptic region consistently exhibited rtGR immunoreactivity. Similarly, in the anterior ventral preoptic region, a group of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neurons, known for inhibiting gonadotropin (GTH)-2 secretion during vitellogenesis, was consistently shown to strongly express GR. Finally, we show that a large majority of the GTH-1 (FSH-like) and GTH-2 (LH-like) cells of the pituitary exhibit rtGR immunoreactivity. These results indicate that cortisol may affect the neuroendocrine control of the reproductive process of the rainbow trout at multiple sites.  (+info)

Development and cytodifferentiation of the rabbit pars intermedia. II. Neonatal to adult. (4/4031)

Material from pars intermedia obtained from rabbits ranging from the second week post-partum to the adult stage, and including specimens from pregnant animals, was studied. The rate of cell division became greatly reduced early in postnatal) development. The commonest type of cell (the pars intermedia-glandular cell) becomes increasingly PAS-positive during the early stages of development. Although by 35 days differentiation of all the ACT-type cells is complete, the pars intermedia-glandular cells take as long as 53 days to mature. The epithelioid border of the hypophysial cleft persists throughout life, commonly containing dark cells. A ciliary fringe frequently appears in neonates and persists in pregnancy. Possible functions of such cilia are discussed. Throughout development the fine structure of the vasculature was studied. Secretory granules resembling those within the cells were seen in and around the blood vessels, and the mode of endocrine secretion in the pars intermedia tissue is discussed. The pars intermedia-glandular cells of the pregnant rabbits appeared hyperactive. The functional significance of the mammalian pars intermedia is discussed.  (+info)

Diffusion barriers limit the effect of mobile calcium buffers on exocytosis of large dense cored vesicles. (5/4031)

Fast exocytosis in melanotropic cells, activated by calcium entry through voltage-gated calcium channels, is very sensitive to mobile calcium buffers (complete block at 800 microM ethylene glycol bis(beta-aminoethyl ether)-N,N,N'N'-tetraacetic acid (EGTA)). This indicates that calcium diffuses a substantial distance from the channel to the vesicle. Surprisingly, 1, 2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA), having a similar KD for calcium as EGTA but a approximately 100 times faster binding rate, blocked exocytosis only twice as effectively as EGTA. Using computer simulations, we demonstrate that this result cannot be explained by free diffusion and buffer binding rates. We hypothesized that local saturation of calcium buffers is involved. A diffusion barrier for both calcium and buffer molecules, located 50-300 nm from the membrane and reducing diffusion 1000 to 10,000 times, generated similar calcium concentrations for specific concentrations of EGTA and BAPTA. With such barriers, calcium rise phase kinetics upon short step depolarizations (2-20 ms) were faster for EGTA than for BAPTA, implying that short depolarizations should allow exocytosis with 50 microM EGTA but not with 25 microM BAPTA. This prediction was confirmed experimentally with capacitance measurements. Coupling exocytosis to calcium dynamics in the model, we found that a barrier with a approximately 3000 times reduced diffusion at approximately 130 nm beneath the membrane best explains the experimentally observed effects of EGTA and BAPTA on block and kinetics of release.  (+info)

Role of the Bicoid-related homeodomain factor Pitx1 in specifying hindlimb morphogenesis and pituitary development. (6/4031)

Pitx1 is a Bicoid-related homeodomain factor that exhibits preferential expression in the hindlimb, as well as expression in the developing anterior pituitary gland and first branchial arch. Here, we report that Pitx1 gene-deleted mice exhibit striking abnormalities in morphogenesis and growth of the hindlimb, resulting in a limb that exhibits structural changes in tibia and fibula as well as patterning alterations in patella and proximal tarsus, to more closely resemble the corresponding forelimb structures. Deletion of the Pitx1 locus results in decreased distal expression of the hindlimb-specific marker, the T-box factor, Tbx4. On the basis of similar expression patterns in chick, targeted misexpression of chick Pitx1 in the developing wing bud causes the resulting limb to assume altered digit number and morphogenesis, with Tbx4 induction. We hypothesize that Pitx1 serves to critically modulate morphogenesis, growth, and potential patterning of a specific hindlimb region, serving as a component of the morphological and growth distinctions in forelimb and hindlimb identity. Pitx1 gene-deleted mice also exhibit reciprocal abnormalities of two ventral and one dorsal anterior pituitary cell types, presumably on the basis of its synergistic functions with other transcription factors, and defects in the derivatives of the first branchial arch, including cleft palate, suggesting a proliferative defect in these organs analogous to that observed in the hindlimb.  (+info)

Absent pituitary gland and hypoplasia of the cerebellar vermis associated with partial ophthalmoplegia and postaxial polydactyly: a variant of orofaciodigital syndrome VI or a new syndrome? (7/4031)

We report two sibs with features overlapping those of orofaciodigital syndrome type VI (Varadi syndrome). Both presented at birth with oculomotor abnormalities, dysmorphic facial features, and dysgenesis of the cerebellar vermis. There were minimal oral manifestations (high arched palate) in both of them and one had postaxial polydactyly of both hands and one foot. In addition, there was evidence of aplasia of the pituitary gland on MRI scan in both of them with evidence of hypopituitarism. Both responded well to hormone replacement therapy with improvement in their linear growth and mental ability. These cases may represent a new autosomal recessive midline defect syndrome with features overlapping OFDS VI. Alternatively the features in these children could represent variability within OFDS VI.  (+info)

Leptin and reproduction. (8/4031)

In the few years since leptin was identified as a satiety factor in rodents, it has been implicated in the regulation of various physiological processes. Leptin has been shown to promote sexual maturation in rodent species and a role in reproduction has been investigated at various sites within the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis. This review considers the evidence that leptin (or alteration in amount of body fat) can affect reproduction. There is evidence that leptin plays a permissive role in the onset of puberty, probably through action on the hypothalamus, where leptin receptors are found in cells that express appetite-regulating peptides. There is little evidence that leptin has a positive effect on the pituitary gonadotrophs and the gonads. There is also very little indication that leptin acts in an acute manner to regulate reproduction in the short term. It seems more likely that leptin is a 'barometer' of body condition that sends signals to the brain. Studies in vitro have shown negative effects on ovarian steroid production and there are no reports of effects on testicular function. Leptin concentrations in plasma increase in women during pregnancy, owing to production by the placenta but the functional significance of this is unknown. A number of factors that affect the production and action of leptin have yet to be studied in detail.  (+info)