Possible adaptive changes of the recently cloned serotonin 5‐HT6 receptor after the selective lesion of serotoninergic neurons by an intracerebral administration of 5,7‐dihydroxytryptamine were investigated using competitive RT‐PCR (reverse transcription followed by polymerase chain reaction) for the measurement of 5‐HT6‐mRNA in various areas of the rat central nervous system. In control rats, 5‐HT6‐mRNA was the most abundant in the nucleus accumbens, followed by the olfactory tubercle and the striatum. High levels of 5‐HT6‐mRNA were also found in the hypothalamus and the hippocampus, whereas the cerebral cortex, the substantia nigra, and the spinal cord contained moderate levels of the transcript. Low but easily quantifiable levels of 5‐HT6‐mRNA were measured in the ventral tegmental area, the anterior raphe area, and the cerebellum. In addition, moderate to low levels of this mRNA were also found in dorsal root ganglia and the pituitary gland. Three weeks after the microinfusion of 5,7‐dihydroxytryptamine into the anteroventral vicinity of the dorsal raphe nucleus in nomifensine‐pretreated rats, the levels of serotonin transporter‐mRNA were reduced by 90% in the anterior raphe area, as expected of the extensive lesion of serotoninergic neurons. In contrast, quantitative determinations of the 5‐HT6‐mRNA in this area as well as in the nucleus accumbens, the striatum, and the hippocampus indicated that its levels were not significantly different in 5,7‐dihydroxytryptamine‐treated rats and in controls. These data showed that the 5‐HT6 receptor: 1) is not an autoreceptor, and 2) exhibits probably no up regulation in postsynaptic target cells after the selective degeneration of serotoninergic projections. © 1996 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
Synapse – Wiley
Published: Jul 1, 1996
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