phoenixin(smim20), a gene coding for a novel reproductive ligand, is expressed in the brain of adult zebrafish

Ceriani, R.; Calfún, C.; Whitlock, K.E.

Keywords: development, hypothalamus, GPR173, Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), Kisspeptin.


Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is a highly conserved neuroendocrine decapeptide that is essential for the onset of puberty and the maintenance of the reproductive state. In addition to its role as hypothalamic releasing hormone, GnRH has multiple functions including modulator of neural activity within the nervous system and of resulting behaviors. These multiple functions are reflected by the existence of multiple isoforms. Despite its importance as a critical hypothalamic releasing hormone, the gnrh1 gene has been lost in zebrafish, and its reproductive function is not compensated for by other GnRH isoforms (GnRH2 and GnRH3), suggesting that, surprisingly, zebrafish do not use any of the GnRH peptides to control reproduction and fertility. Previously we proposed that Phoenixin/SMIM20, a novel peptide identified in mammals and the ligand for the orphan GPR173, is a potential candidate to control the initiation of sexual development and fertility in the zebrafish. Here we confirm the sequence of the zebrafish phoenixin/smim20 gene and by RT-PCR show that it is expressed early in development through adulthood. Subsequently we show that phoenixin/smim20 is expressed in the adult brain including the regions of the hypothalamus important in the control of fertility and reproduction.

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Título de la Revista: Gene Expression Patterns
Volumen: 39
Editorial: Elsevier
Fecha de publicación: 2021
Página de inicio: 119
Financiamiento/Sponsor: Centro Interdisciplinario de Neurociencia de Valparaiso (CINV), Instituto de Neurociencia, Universidad de Valparaiso