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Neurosci Lett. 2001 Nov 16;314(3):119-22.

Neuropeptide Y rapidly reduces Period 1 and Period 2 mRNA levels in the hamster suprachiasmatic nucleus.

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  • 1Neuroscience Institute, Morehouse School of Medicine, 720 Westview Drive, SW, Atlanta, GA 30310-1495, USA. fukuhac@msm.edu


The mammalian suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) contains the main circadian clock. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) that is released from the intergeniculate leaflet of the lateral geniculate body to the SCN, acts in the SCN to advance circadian phase in the subjective day via the NPY Y2 receptor. We used semi-quantitative in situ hybridization to determine the effect of NPY on circadian clock genes, Period 1 (Per1) and Period 2 (Per2), expression in SCN slices. Addition of NPY to the brain slices in the subjective day resulted in reduction of Per1 and Per2 mRNA levels 0.5 and 2 h after treatment. NPY Y1/Y5 and Y2 agonists decreased Per1 within 0.5 h. These results suggest that NPY may induce phase shifts by mechanisms involving or resulting in reduction of Per1 and Per2 mRNA levels.

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