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Brain Res. 1980 Jul 14;193(2):353-72.

Neuroregulatory and neuroendocrine GnRH pathways in the hypothalamus and forebrain of the baboon.


The distribution of neurons containing gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) in the baboon hypothalamus and forebrain was studied immunocytochemically by light and electron microscopy. GnRH was present in the perikarya, axonal and dendritic processes of immunoreactive neurons. Three populations of GnRH neurons could be distinguished. Most of the GnRH neurons which are assumed to directly influence the anterior pituitary were in the medial basal hypothalamus. Other cells that projected to the median eminence were found scattered throughout the hypothalamus. A second, larger population of neurons apparently was not involved with control of the anterior pituitary. These neurons were generally found within afferent and efferent pathways of the hypothalamus and forebrain, and may receive external information affecting reproduction. A few neurons projecting to the median eminence were also observed sending collaterals to other brain areas. Thus, in addition to their neuroendocrine role, these cells possibly have neuroregulatory functions. The inference is made that these bifunctional neurons, together with the widely observed GnRH-GnRH cellular interactions may help to synchronize ovulation and sexual behavior.

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