Gene expression of NMDA receptor subunits in rat adrenals under basal and stress conditions
Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
In addition to the central nervous system, glutamate receptors have been recently identified in a number of peripheral tissues, including adrenals. Pharmacological evidence indicates that adrenal glutamate receptors may be involved in stress response, particularly in catecholamine release. However, possible stress-induced changes at the level of local receptors themselves have not been evaluated yet. This study was aimed to investigate gene expression of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor
... (NMDA) receptor subunits (NR1, NR2A, NR2B) in rat adrenal gland under basal and stress conditions, using RT-PCR. NR1 mRNA was found to be present in the adrenal gland, while mRNAs coding for NR2-type subunits failed to be detected in adrenal tissue. The distribution of NR1 mRNA in rat adrenals showed higher concentrations in the adrenal medulla (228%) compared to those in the cortex. Single stress stimulus (immobilization) induced a significant increase of NR1 gene expression in both medullar (by 25%) and cortical (by 66%) regions of the adrenal gland at 24 h, while no changes were observed at 3 h after the stress exposure. It is possible that delayed rise in adrenal NR1 gene expression following stress exposure represents one of the factors by which stress exerts long-term effects on adrenal function at the molecular level.