Photoperiod and reproductive condition are associated with changes in RFamide-Related Peptide (RFRP) expression in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus)

Alex O. Mason, Sean Duffy, Sheng Zhao, Takayoshi Ubuka, George E. Bentley, Kazuyoshi Tsutsui, Rae Silver, Lance J. Kriegsfeld

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    57 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    To conserve scarce energetic resources during winter, seasonal breeders inhibit reproduction and other nonessential behavioral and physiological processes. Reproductive cessation is initiated in response to declining day lengths, a stimulus represented centrally as a long-duration melatonin signal. The melatonin signal is not decoded by the reproductive axis directly, but by an unidentified neurochemical system upstream of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). The dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (DMH) has been implicated in seasonal changes in reproductive function in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus), although the specific-cell phenotype decoding photoperiodic information remains unknown. RFamide-related peptide (RFRP; the mammalian homolog of the gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH) gene identified in birds) has emerged as a potent inhibitory regulator of the reproductive axis and, significantly, its expression is localized to cell bodies of the DMH in rodents. In the present study, the authors explored the relationship between RFRP expression, photoperiod exposure, and reproductive condition/hormonal status. In male hamsters that respond to short days with reproductive inhibition, RFRP-ir and mRNA expression are markedly reduced relative to long-day animals. Replacement of testosterone in short-day animals did not affect this response, suggesting that alterations in RFRP expression are not a result of changing sex steroid concentrations. A subset of the hamster population that ignores day length cues and remains reproductively competent in short days (nonresponders) exhibits RFRP-ir expression comparable to long-day hamsters. Analysis of cell body and fiber density suggests a potential interplay between peptide production and release rate in differentially regulating the reproductive axis during early and late stages of reproductive regression. Together, the present findings indicate that photoperiod-induced suppression of reproduction is associated with changes in RFRP and mRNA expression, providing opportunity for further exploration on the role that RFRP plays in this process.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)176-185
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Biological Rhythms
    Volume25
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2010 Jun

    Fingerprint

    Mesocricetus
    Photoperiod
    Cricetinae
    Mediodorsal Thalamic Nucleus
    Melatonin
    Hypothalamus
    Reproduction
    Physiological Phenomena
    Messenger RNA
    RFamide peptide
    Gonadotropins
    Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
    Birds
    Cues
    Testosterone
    Rodentia
    Steroids
    Hormones
    Phenotype
    Peptides

    Keywords

    • DMH
    • Gonad
    • Melatonin
    • Photoperiod
    • Reproduction
    • Seasonal

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Physiology
    • Physiology (medical)

    Cite this

    Photoperiod and reproductive condition are associated with changes in RFamide-Related Peptide (RFRP) expression in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). / Mason, Alex O.; Duffy, Sean; Zhao, Sheng; Ubuka, Takayoshi; Bentley, George E.; Tsutsui, Kazuyoshi; Silver, Rae; Kriegsfeld, Lance J.

    In: Journal of Biological Rhythms, Vol. 25, No. 3, 06.2010, p. 176-185.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Mason, Alex O. ; Duffy, Sean ; Zhao, Sheng ; Ubuka, Takayoshi ; Bentley, George E. ; Tsutsui, Kazuyoshi ; Silver, Rae ; Kriegsfeld, Lance J. / Photoperiod and reproductive condition are associated with changes in RFamide-Related Peptide (RFRP) expression in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). In: Journal of Biological Rhythms. 2010 ; Vol. 25, No. 3. pp. 176-185.
    @article{9947b18e976443e38078e129adc0f184,
    title = "Photoperiod and reproductive condition are associated with changes in RFamide-Related Peptide (RFRP) expression in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus)",
    abstract = "To conserve scarce energetic resources during winter, seasonal breeders inhibit reproduction and other nonessential behavioral and physiological processes. Reproductive cessation is initiated in response to declining day lengths, a stimulus represented centrally as a long-duration melatonin signal. The melatonin signal is not decoded by the reproductive axis directly, but by an unidentified neurochemical system upstream of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). The dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (DMH) has been implicated in seasonal changes in reproductive function in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus), although the specific-cell phenotype decoding photoperiodic information remains unknown. RFamide-related peptide (RFRP; the mammalian homolog of the gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH) gene identified in birds) has emerged as a potent inhibitory regulator of the reproductive axis and, significantly, its expression is localized to cell bodies of the DMH in rodents. In the present study, the authors explored the relationship between RFRP expression, photoperiod exposure, and reproductive condition/hormonal status. In male hamsters that respond to short days with reproductive inhibition, RFRP-ir and mRNA expression are markedly reduced relative to long-day animals. Replacement of testosterone in short-day animals did not affect this response, suggesting that alterations in RFRP expression are not a result of changing sex steroid concentrations. A subset of the hamster population that ignores day length cues and remains reproductively competent in short days (nonresponders) exhibits RFRP-ir expression comparable to long-day hamsters. Analysis of cell body and fiber density suggests a potential interplay between peptide production and release rate in differentially regulating the reproductive axis during early and late stages of reproductive regression. Together, the present findings indicate that photoperiod-induced suppression of reproduction is associated with changes in RFRP and mRNA expression, providing opportunity for further exploration on the role that RFRP plays in this process.",
    keywords = "DMH, Gonad, Melatonin, Photoperiod, Reproduction, Seasonal",
    author = "Mason, {Alex O.} and Sean Duffy and Sheng Zhao and Takayoshi Ubuka and Bentley, {George E.} and Kazuyoshi Tsutsui and Rae Silver and Kriegsfeld, {Lance J.}",
    year = "2010",
    month = "6",
    doi = "10.1177/0748730410368821",
    language = "English",
    volume = "25",
    pages = "176--185",
    journal = "Journal of Biological Rhythms",
    issn = "0748-7304",
    publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
    number = "3",

    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Photoperiod and reproductive condition are associated with changes in RFamide-Related Peptide (RFRP) expression in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus)

    AU - Mason, Alex O.

    AU - Duffy, Sean

    AU - Zhao, Sheng

    AU - Ubuka, Takayoshi

    AU - Bentley, George E.

    AU - Tsutsui, Kazuyoshi

    AU - Silver, Rae

    AU - Kriegsfeld, Lance J.

    PY - 2010/6

    Y1 - 2010/6

    N2 - To conserve scarce energetic resources during winter, seasonal breeders inhibit reproduction and other nonessential behavioral and physiological processes. Reproductive cessation is initiated in response to declining day lengths, a stimulus represented centrally as a long-duration melatonin signal. The melatonin signal is not decoded by the reproductive axis directly, but by an unidentified neurochemical system upstream of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). The dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (DMH) has been implicated in seasonal changes in reproductive function in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus), although the specific-cell phenotype decoding photoperiodic information remains unknown. RFamide-related peptide (RFRP; the mammalian homolog of the gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH) gene identified in birds) has emerged as a potent inhibitory regulator of the reproductive axis and, significantly, its expression is localized to cell bodies of the DMH in rodents. In the present study, the authors explored the relationship between RFRP expression, photoperiod exposure, and reproductive condition/hormonal status. In male hamsters that respond to short days with reproductive inhibition, RFRP-ir and mRNA expression are markedly reduced relative to long-day animals. Replacement of testosterone in short-day animals did not affect this response, suggesting that alterations in RFRP expression are not a result of changing sex steroid concentrations. A subset of the hamster population that ignores day length cues and remains reproductively competent in short days (nonresponders) exhibits RFRP-ir expression comparable to long-day hamsters. Analysis of cell body and fiber density suggests a potential interplay between peptide production and release rate in differentially regulating the reproductive axis during early and late stages of reproductive regression. Together, the present findings indicate that photoperiod-induced suppression of reproduction is associated with changes in RFRP and mRNA expression, providing opportunity for further exploration on the role that RFRP plays in this process.

    AB - To conserve scarce energetic resources during winter, seasonal breeders inhibit reproduction and other nonessential behavioral and physiological processes. Reproductive cessation is initiated in response to declining day lengths, a stimulus represented centrally as a long-duration melatonin signal. The melatonin signal is not decoded by the reproductive axis directly, but by an unidentified neurochemical system upstream of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). The dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (DMH) has been implicated in seasonal changes in reproductive function in Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus), although the specific-cell phenotype decoding photoperiodic information remains unknown. RFamide-related peptide (RFRP; the mammalian homolog of the gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH) gene identified in birds) has emerged as a potent inhibitory regulator of the reproductive axis and, significantly, its expression is localized to cell bodies of the DMH in rodents. In the present study, the authors explored the relationship between RFRP expression, photoperiod exposure, and reproductive condition/hormonal status. In male hamsters that respond to short days with reproductive inhibition, RFRP-ir and mRNA expression are markedly reduced relative to long-day animals. Replacement of testosterone in short-day animals did not affect this response, suggesting that alterations in RFRP expression are not a result of changing sex steroid concentrations. A subset of the hamster population that ignores day length cues and remains reproductively competent in short days (nonresponders) exhibits RFRP-ir expression comparable to long-day hamsters. Analysis of cell body and fiber density suggests a potential interplay between peptide production and release rate in differentially regulating the reproductive axis during early and late stages of reproductive regression. Together, the present findings indicate that photoperiod-induced suppression of reproduction is associated with changes in RFRP and mRNA expression, providing opportunity for further exploration on the role that RFRP plays in this process.

    KW - DMH

    KW - Gonad

    KW - Melatonin

    KW - Photoperiod

    KW - Reproduction

    KW - Seasonal

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=77952623796&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=77952623796&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    U2 - 10.1177/0748730410368821

    DO - 10.1177/0748730410368821

    M3 - Article

    C2 - 20484689

    AN - SCOPUS:77952623796

    VL - 25

    SP - 176

    EP - 185

    JO - Journal of Biological Rhythms

    JF - Journal of Biological Rhythms

    SN - 0748-7304

    IS - 3

    ER -