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Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2000 Jul;119(1):77-84.

Cloning of pro-vasotocin and pro-isotocin cDNAs from the flounder Platichthys flesus; levels of hypothalamic mRNA following acute osmotic challenge.

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School of Biological Sciences, University of Manchester, Oxford Rd, Manchester, M13 9PT, United Kingdom.


Sequences coding for pro-vasotocin and pro-isotocin have been identified by screening a flounder (Platichthys flesus) hypothalamic cDNA library. The 1074-bp proVT and 727-bp proIT sequences contain a signal peptide and hormone, connected to a neurophysin by a Gly-Lys-Arg sequence. Both sequences also have an elongated carboxyl-terminal with a leucine-rich core resembling copeptin but lacking the amino terminal Arg residue. The levels of pro-vasotocin and pro-isotocin mRNA in the hypothalamus were measured concomitantly with pituitary AVT content and plasma AVT concentration following acute transfer of fish between freshwater and seawater. Three days after transfer from seawater to freshwater there appears to be a down regulation of the AVT hormone system with a fall in hypothalamic pro-vasotocin mRNA levels, an increase in pituitary AVT content, and a fall in plasma levels, but these changes did not achieve statistical significance compared to controls. No change in the AVT system was detected 3 days following the transfer of fish from freshwater to seawater. Hypothalamic isotocin mRNA levels did not change following hypo- or hyperosmotic challenge.

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