Vasopressin gene products are colocalised with corticotrophin-releasing factor within neurosecretory vesicles in the external zone of the median eminence of the Japanese macaque monkey (Macaca fuscata)

Akito Otubo, Natsuko Kawakami, Sho Maejima, Yasumasa Ueda, John F. Morris, Tatsuya Sakamoto, Hirotaka Sakamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Arginine vasopressin (AVP), when released into portal capillaries with corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF) from terminals of parvocellular neurones of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVH), facilitates the secretion of adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) in stressed rodents. The AVP gene encodes a propeptide precursor containing AVP, AVP-associated neurophysin II (NPII), and a glycopeptide copeptin, although it is currently unclear whether copeptin is always cleaved from the neurophysin and whether the NPII and/or copeptin have any functional role in the pituitary. Furthermore, for primates, it is unknown whether CRF, AVP, NPII and copeptin are all colocalised in neurosecretory vesicles in the terminal region of the paraventricular CRF neurone axons. Therefore, we investigated, by fluorescence and immunogold immunocytochemistry, the cellular and subcellular relationships of these peptides in the CRF- and AVP-producing cells in unstressed Japanese macaque monkeys (Macaca fuscata). Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis showed the expression of both CRF and AVP mRNAs in the monkey PVH. As expected, in the magnocellular neurones of the PVH and supraoptic nucleus, essentially no CRF immunoreactivity could be detected in NPII-immunoreactive (AVP-producing) neurones. Immunofluorescence showed that, in the parvocellular part of the PVH, NPII was detectable in a subpopulation (approximately 39%) of the numerous CRF-immunoreactive neuronal perikarya, whereas, in the outer median eminence, NPII was more prominent (approximately 52%) in the CRF varicosities. Triple immunoelectron microscopy in the median eminence demonstrated the presence of both NPII and copeptin immunoreactivity in dense-cored vesicles of CRF-containing axons. The results are consistent with an idea that the AVP propeptide is processed and NPII and copeptin are colocalised in hypothalamic-pituitary CRF axons in the median eminence of a primate. The CRF, AVP and copeptin are all co-packaged in neurosecretory vesicles in monkeys and are thus likely to be co-released into the portal capillary blood to amplify ACTH release from the primate anterior pituitary.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12875
JournalJournal of Neuroendocrinology
Volume32
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2020

Keywords

  • Japanese macaque monkey (Macaca fuscata)
  • corticotrophin-releasing factor
  • median eminence
  • paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus
  • vasopressin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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