Testosterone differentially regulates expression of GnRH messenger RNAs in the terminal nerve, preoptic and midbrain of male tilapia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of the present study was to examine the regulation of three molecular variants of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH)-encoding mRNAs by testosterone in the male tilapia Oreochromis niloticus. Tilapias castrated for two weeks were injected intraperitoneally with sesame oil or 5 μg/g testosterone for 7 days. In situ hybridization histochemistry was performed using 35S-labelled 30-mer antisense oligonucleotide probes complementary to exon two (bases 1-30) of salmon-, seabream-, and chicken II-GnRH. Computerized image analysis was performed to quantify GnRH mRNA expression in the terminal nerve ganglia (nucleus olfactoretinalis) and in individual cells of the preoptic area and the midbrain tegmentum. Testosterone treatment significantly elevated terminal nerve salmon-GnRH mRNA, reduced preoptic seabream-GnRH mRNA but had no effect on midbrain chicken II-GnRH mRNA levels. The total number and size of preoptic and midbrain GnRH mRNA-containing neurons or the total volume of the terminal nerve ganglia in testosterone-treated animals did not differ significantly from oil-treated animals. The midbrain chicken II-GnRH neurons are not targets of testosterone. These results demonstrate for the first time differential regulation of subpopulations of GnRH neurons with molecular diversity and different topography.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-20
Number of pages8
JournalMolecular Brain Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 Sep 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Chicken II-GnRH
  • In situ hybridization
  • LHRH
  • Midbrain
  • Nucleus olfactoretinalis
  • Preoptic area
  • Salmon-GnRH
  • Seabream-GnRH
  • Terminal nerve

Cite this