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Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2008 Oct 10;293(1-2):43-56. doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2008.06.017. Epub 2008 Jul 5.

The goldfish (Carassius auratus) as a model for neuroendocrine signaling.


Goldfish (Carassius auratus) are excellent model organisms for the neuroendocrine signaling and the regulation of reproduction in vertebrates. Goldfish also serve as useful model organisms in numerous other fields. In contrast to mammals, teleost fish do not have a median eminence; the anterior pituitary is innervated by numerous neuronal cell types and thus, pituitary hormone release is directly regulated. Here we briefly describe the neuroendocrine control of luteinizing hormone. Stimulation by gonadotropin-releasing hormone and a multitude of classical neurotransmitters and neuropeptides is opposed by the potent inhibitory actions of dopamine. The stimulatory actions of gamma-aminobutyric acid and serotonin are also discussed. We will focus on the development of a cDNA microarray composed of carp and goldfish sequences which has allowed us to examine neurotransmitter-regulated gene expression in the neuroendocrine brain and to investigate potential genomic interactions between these key neurotransmitter systems. We observed that isotocin (fish homologue of oxytocin) and activins are regulated by multiple neurotransmitters, which is discussed in light of their roles in reproduction in other species. We have also found that many novel and uncharacterized goldfish expressed sequence tags in the brain are also regulated by neurotransmitters. Their sites of production and whether they play a role in neuroendocrine signaling and control of reproduction remain to be determined. The transcriptomic tools developed to study reproduction could also be used to advance our understanding of neuroendocrine-immune interactions and the relationship between growth and food intake in fish.

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