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Expression of the cyp19a1 gene in the adult brain of Xenopus is neuronal and not sexually dimorphic

Abstract : The last step of oestrogen biosynthesis is catalyzed by the enzyme aromatase, the product of the cyp19a1 gene. In vertebrates, cyp19a1 is expressed in the brain resulting in a local oestrogen production that seems important not only for the control of reproduction-related circuits and sexual behaviour, but also for the regulation of neural development, synaptic plasticity and cell survival. In adult amphibians, the precise sites of expression of cyp19a1 in the brain have not been investigated which prevents proper understanding of its potential physiological functions. The present study aimed at examining the precise neuroanatomical distribution of cyp19a1 transcripts in adult brains of both male and female Xenopus. We found that cyp19a1 expression is highly regionalized in the brains of both sexes. The highest expression was found in the anterior part of the preoptic area and in the caudal hypothalamus, but significant levels of cyp19a1 transcripts were also found in the supraoptic paraventricular and suprachiasmatic areas, and in brain regions corresponding to the septum, bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and amygdala. Importantly, no obvious difference between male and female Xenopus was detected at the level of cyp19a1 transcripts. Additionally, in the brain of adult Xenopus, cyp19a1 transcripts were detected in neurons, and not in glial cells. These data and those available in other vertebrates on cyp19a1/aromatase expression suggest that, with the intriguing exception of teleost fishes, cyp19a1 was under strong evolutionary conservation with respect to its sites of expression and the nature of the cells in which it is expressed
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https://hal-univ-rennes1.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01187140
Contributor : Laurent Jonchère <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, August 26, 2015 - 11:20:08 AM
Last modification on : Friday, November 29, 2019 - 1:47:50 AM

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Pascal Coumailleau, Olivier Kah. Expression of the cyp19a1 gene in the adult brain of Xenopus is neuronal and not sexually dimorphic. General and Comparative Endocrinology, Elsevier, 2015, 221, pp.203-212. ⟨10.1016/j.ygcen.2015.08.008⟩. ⟨hal-01187140⟩

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