Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2007 Nov;293(5):E1325-34. Epub 2007 Aug 28.

Knockdown of clock genes in the suprachiasmatic nucleus blocks prolactin surges and alters FRA expression in the locus coeruleus of female rats.

Author information

  • 1Department of Biological Science, Program in Neuroscience, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306-4340, USA.


The nature of the circadian signal from the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) required for prolactin (PRL) surges is unknown. Because the SCN neuronal circadian rhythm is determined by a feedback loop of Period (Per) 1, Per2, and circadian locomotor output cycles kaput (Clock) gene expressions, we investigated the effect of SCN rhythmicity on PRL surges by disrupting this loop. Because lesion of the locus coeruleus (LC) abolishes PRL surges and these neurons receive SCN projections, we investigated the role of SCN rhythmicity in the LC neuronal circadian rhythm as a possible component of the circadian mechanism regulating PRL surges. Cycling rats on proestrous day and estradiol-treated ovariectomized rats received injections of antisense or random-sequence deoxyoligonucleotide cocktails for clock genes (Per1, Per2, and Clock) in the SCN, and blood samples were taken for PRL measurements. The percentage of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neurons immunoreactive to Fos-related antigen (FRA) was determined in ovariectomized rats submitted to the cocktail injections and in a 12:12-h light:dark (LD) or constant dark (DD) environment. The antisense cocktail abolished both the proestrous and the estradiol-induced PRL surges observed in the afternoon and the increase of FRA expression in the LC neurons at Zeitgeber time 14 in LD and at circadian time 14 in DD. Because SCN afferents and efferents were probably preserved, the SCN rhythmicity is essential for the magnitude of daily PRL surges in female rats as well as for LC neuronal circadian rhythm. SCN neurons therefore determine PRL secretory surges, possibly by modulating LC circadian neuronal activity.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk