The participation of gonadal steroid hormones in the regulation of the expression of the somatostatin gene in the hypothalamus and cerebral cortex was studied by using a quantitative densitometric hybridization assay which allows the direct measurement of specific somatostatin mRNA levels. The levels of somatostatin mRNA in hypothalamus were found to be significantly decreased following gonadectomy in both male and female rats (67% in males and 75% in females). Moreover, with in situ hybridization histochemistry somatostatin mRNA was similarly reduced following gonadectomy in the dorsal portion of the periventricular region and in the ventromedial nucleus. Estradiol dibenzoate treatment reversed the decrease in somatostatin mRNA in females within 24 h and testosterone treatment reversed the decrease in castrated males. In contrast, there was no significant change in cerebral cortex somatostatin mRNA levels after gonadectomy. These results suggest that sex steroids are involved in the regulation of the somatostatin gene in the hypothalamus, possibly at the transcriptional level.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||The Journal of biological chemistry|
|State||Published - 5 Jun 1988|