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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009 Apr;1163:410-3. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2008.03621.x.

Seasonal changes in the synthesis of the neurosteroid 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone stimulating locomotor activity in newts.

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  • 1Laboratory of Integrative Brain Sciences, Department of Biology, Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan.


We recently found that the newt brain actively produces 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone, a novel amphibian neurosteroid stimulating locomotor activity. It is well known that locomotor activity of male newts increases during the breeding period. To understand the physiological role of 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone, we investigated seasonal changes in 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone synthesis in the brain of male newts. Interestingly, 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone synthesis in the brain showed marked changes during the annual breeding cycle, with a maximal level in the breeding period when locomotor activity of male newts increases. These results suggest that 7alpha-hydroxypregnenolone induces seasonal locomotor changes in male newts.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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