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Regul Pept. 1992 Feb 18;37(3):287-303.

Pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypeptide (PACAP): discovery and current status of research.

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U.S.-Japan Biomedical Research Laboratories, Tulane University Hebert Center, Belle Chasse, LA 70037.


For last 2 years since PACAP was first discovered, many important findings on PACAP have been reported. cDNAs encoding the precursor proteins of PACAP in sheep, human and rat were cloned, and the precursor proteins characterized. PACAP was found in a high concentration in the central nervous system, adrenal medulla and testis. Immunohistochemical study indicated that PACAP containing neural fibers are present throughout the brain, including both internal and external zones of the median eminence. In the hypothalamus many PACAP positive cell bodies were demonstrated in the supraoptic nucleus and the paraventricular nucleus in various species. Four types of high affinity PACAP receptor were demonstrated. PACAP receptors in the central nervous system, pituitary, adrenal medulla and germ cells of the testis are highly specific for PACAP, and not shared with VIP. The PACAP receptor was solubilized and cross-linking of 125I-PACAP27 with the binding protein suggest that the molecular weight of the receptor is around 57,000. Various biological actions of PACAP were reported, but the physiological cellular events linked with PACAP-induced activation of adenylate cyclase remain to be investigated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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