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J Biol Chem. 2002 Mar 15;277(11):9069-76. Epub 2002 Jan 8.

Food deprivation-induced expression of minoxidil sulfotransferase in the hypothalamus uncovered by microarray analysis.

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Department of Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, USA.


We used oligonucleotide microarrays to analyze comprehensively hypothalamic gene expression changes that correlate with energy homeostasis. We compared the hypothalamic gene expression profiles of freely fed and 48-h fasted rats using 26,379 oligonucleotide probe sets. Expression of 96 genes was up-regulated and expression of 73 genes was down-regulated in a statistically significant manner with fasting. The gene encoding the enzyme minoxidil sulfotransferase, an enzyme that catalyzes the transfer of sulfonate groups to biogenic amines and other substrates, was foremost among a set of genes whose mRNAs were uniformly detectable and displaying the greatest transcriptional changes with fasting. Northern blot analysis indicated that minoxidil sulfotransferase mRNA is up-regulated in the fasted rat and mouse, ob/ob mouse, and fa/fa rat. Results of reverse transcription quantitative PCR indicated that minoxidil sulfotransferase mRNA is also up-regulated in the microdissected arcuate and paraventricular nuclei of the fasted rat. Several index genes known to be either up-regulated (neuropeptide Y) or down-regulated (amphetamine-regulated transcript and proopiomelanocortin) with fasting were also found to be present among our set of "differentially expressed" genes. This study identifies a novel gene induced by fasting and demonstrates the feasibility of using oligonucleotide microarrays for the study of complex neuronal processes.

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