Author(s): Segall LA, Perrin JS, Walker CD, Stewart J, Amir S, Segall LA, Perrin JS, Walker CD, Stewart J, Amir S
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Abstract We investigated the involvement of the adrenal glucocorticoid, corticosterone, in the control of the rhythmic expression of the circadian clock protein, Period2, in forebrain nuclei known to be sensitive to glucocorticoids, stressors and drugs of abuse, the oval nucleus of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and the central nucleus of the amygdala. We found previously that the daily rhythm of Period2 in these nuclei is uniquely dependent on the integrity of the adrenal glands (Amir S, Lamont EW, Robinson B, Stewart J (2004) A circadian rhythm in the expression of PERIOD2 protein reveals a novel SCN-controlled oscillator in the oval nucleus of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. J Neurosci 24:781-790; Lamont EW, Robinson B, Stewart J, Amir S (2005) The central and basolateral nuclei of the amygdala exhibit opposite diurnal rhythms of expression of the clock protein Period2. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 102:4180-4184). We now show that, in rats, in the absence of the adrenals, corticosterone replacement via the drinking water, which is associated with daily fluctuations in corticosterone levels, restores the rhythm of Period2 in the oval nucleus of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and central nucleus of the amygdala. Corticosterone replacement via constant-release pellets has no effect. These results underscore the importance of circadian glucocorticoid signaling in Period2 rhythms in the oval nucleus of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and central nucleus of the amygdala and suggest a novel mechanism whereby stressors, drugs of abuse, and other abnormal states that affect the patterns of circulating glucocorticoids can alter the functional output of these nuclei.
This article was published in Neuroscience
and referenced in Journal of Neurology & Neurophysiology