D-Aspartate modulates melatonin synthesis in rat pinealocytes

Shougo Ishio, Hiroshi Yamada, Mitsuko Hayashi, Shouki Yatsushiro, Takato Noumi, Akihito Yamaguchi, Yoshinori Moriyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


It has been known that pinealocytes contain the highest level of D- aspartate among various neuroendocrine cells in the rat. Here, we report that exogenous D-aspartate strongly inhibited norepinephrine-dependent melatonin synthesis in the rat pineal gland, the concentration required for 50% inhibition being 75 μM. This inhibition was due at least partly to decreased norepinephrine-dependent serotonin N-acetyltransferase activity. Upon incubation, D-aspartate was gradually released from pinealocytes and accumulated in the incubation medium as determined by high-performance liquid chromatography on a Pirkle-type chiral column. These results suggest that D- aspartate acts as a negative regulator for melatonin synthesis in the pineal gland.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-146
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 19 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Cyclic AMP
  • D-Aspartate
  • L-Glutamate
  • Melatonin
  • Pinealocyte
  • Regulation
  • Serotonin N- acetyltransferase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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