Document Detail

Recovery of function following unilateral denervation, but not unilateral decentralization, of the pineal gland as indicated by measurements of pineal melatonin content and urinary melatonin metabolites.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2133350     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The rat pineal gland is an attractive system for studies on the capacity of neural systems to recover following partial injury, allowing both for the creation of precise subtotal lesions and for the measurement of recovery of function at the cellular level. The pineal gland receives overlapping sympathetic innervation from the right and left internal carotid nerves from neurons whose cell bodies are located in the two superior cervical ganglia. This innervation regulates several aspects of pineal metabolism in a circadian fashion, with the most dramatic being a marked increase in the night-time activity of N-acetyltransferase, a key enzyme regulating the rate of melatonin synthesis. We have previously shown that a highly divergent pattern takes place in the night-time activity of this enzyme following two different unilateral lesions of the sympathetic innervation to the gland. Thus, following a unilateral lesion of the internal carotid nerve (unilateral denervation), there is an initial decline in N-acetyltransferase activity; however, normal activity is again seen during the second and subsequent nights. In contrast, a unilateral lesion of the cervical sympathetic trunk, the nerve that innervates the superior cervical ganglion (unilateral decentralization), results in "permanent" impairment of N-acetyltransferase activity. In the present study, we report that the functional capacity of the entire pathway for melatonin synthesis is similarly affected following these lesions, as reflected by the levels of melatonin and of its precursor N-acetylserotonin in the pineal gland, as well as the levels of the main melatonin metabolite 6-hydroxy-melatonin in the urine.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
G A Kuchel; R L Sherman; R E Zigmond
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Neuroscience     Volume:  37     ISSN:  0306-4522     ISO Abbreviation:  Neuroscience     Publication Date:  1990  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1992-03-10     Completed Date:  1992-03-10     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7605074     Medline TA:  Neuroscience     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  413-20     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115.
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MeSH Terms
Arylamine N-Acetyltransferase / metabolism
Central Nervous System / physiology
Circadian Rhythm / physiology
Melatonin / analogs & derivatives,  metabolism*,  urine
Nerve Endings / physiology
Pineal Gland / metabolism,  physiology*
Rats, Inbred Strains
Serotonin / analogs & derivatives,  metabolism
Sympathectomy, Chemical
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
1210-83-9/N-acetylserotonin; 2208-41-5/6-hydroxymelatonin; 50-67-9/Serotonin; 73-31-4/Melatonin; EC N-Acetyltransferase

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