Brain and pineal 7α-hydroxypregnenolone stimulating locomotor activity: Identification, mode of action and regulation of biosynthesis

Kazuyoshi Tsutsui, Shogo Haraguchi, Yoshitaka Fukada, Hubert Vaudry

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    16 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Biologically active steroids synthesized in the central and peripheral nervous systems are termed neurosteroids. However, the biosynthetic pathways leading to the formation of neurosteroids are still incompletely elucidated. 7α-Hydroxypregnenolone, a novel bioactive neurosteroid stimulating locomotor activity, has been recently identified in the brain of newts and quail. Subsequently, the mode of action and regulation of biosynthesis of 7α-hydroxypregnenolone have been determined. Moreover, recent studies on birds have demonstrated that the pineal gland, an endocrine organ located close to the brain, is an important site of production of neurosteroids de novo from cholesterol. 7α-Hydroxypregnenolone is a major pineal neurosteroid that stimulates locomotor activity in juvenile chickens, connecting light-induced gene expression with locomotion. This review summarizes the advances in our understanding of the identification, mode of action and regulation of biosynthesis of brain and pineal 7α-hydroxypregnenolone, a potent stimulator of locomotor activity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)179-189
    Number of pages11
    JournalFrontiers in Neuroendocrinology
    Volume34
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2013 Aug

    Keywords

    • 7α-Hydroxypregnenolone
    • Brain
    • Corticosterone
    • Cytochrome P450
    • Dopamine
    • Locomotion
    • Melatonin
    • Neurosteroids
    • Pineal gland
    • Prolactin

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems

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