Title

Photoperiod Regulation of Mineralocorticoid Receptor mRNA Expression in Hamster Hippocampus

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-12-1998

Description

Hippocampal mineralocorticoid receptor mRNA expression was increased in male hamsters exposed to 18 days of short photoperiod relative to animals maintained under long day illumination (p < 0.05). Short day hamsters were also characterized by increased weight gain, and heavier adrenal glands (p < 0.05). The larger adrenals showed selective increases in the widths of the zonae reticularis and glomerulosa (p < 0.001). Incidences of torpor and reduced body temperature were observed in the short day animals. No changes were found in reproductive organ weights, systolic blood pressure, open-field behavior, or stress levels of plasma corticosteroids. We conclude that the hamster brain-adrenal axis responds rapidly to changes in photoperiod, raising the possibility that this axis is a primary mediator of shortened photoperiod responses.

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