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Obesity (Silver Spring). 2009 Jan;17(1):114-20. doi: 10.1038/oby.2008.484. Epub 2008 Oct 30.

Regulation of pituitary gene expression by adrenalectomy.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Functional Genomics Laboratory, Molecular Endocrinology and Oncology Research Center, Laval University Medical Center, Laval University, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.


Excessive secretion of adrenal hormones, such as glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid, leads to metabolic syndrome, including insulin resistance, obesity, and hypertension. These metabolic abnormalities are ameliorated by adrenalectomy (ADX). To identify pituitary mediators for ADX-induced physiological alterations, such as weight loss and hypotension, we investigated the effect of ADX on the pituitary transcriptome using serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE). SAGE method is based on isolation of short sequence tags, which usually correspond to unique mRNA species. The SAGE libraries were constructed from pituitary gland of intact (n = 51) and ADX (n = 12) mice. Thirty-one transcripts were differentially expressed between intact and ADX. Three transcripts encoding for proopiomelanocortin and three other transcripts involved in regulation of hormone secretion (neuromedin B, proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 2, and IA-2) were induced by ADX. In addition, ADX increased the expression levels of genes encoding for cation extracellular matrix (matrix gamma-carboxyglutamate protein) and transport (solute carrier family 22 member 17). Conversely, ADX downregulated two transcripts involved in mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) dehydrogenase 3 and cytochrome c oxidase 3). Moreover, ADX significantly modulated the expression levels of one gene with uncharacterized function and 20 novel transcripts. This study reveals alterations of pituitary gene expressions that may be associated with ADX-induced physiological changes including weight loss.

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