Title

Neuropeptide Y: A hypothalamic brake restraining the onset of puberty in primates

Document Type

Article

Journal or Conference Title

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

ISSN

1091-6490

Volume

97

Issue

11

First Page

6179

Last Page

6184

Publication Date

5-23-2000

Department

Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Abstract

The adult reproductive axis is driven by an intermittent discharge of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) generated by a network of hypothalamic neurons known as the GnRH pulse generator. Although this signal generator is operational in infant primates, puberty in these species is delayed by activation shortly after birth of a central neural mechanism that holds GnRH release in check during juvenile development. Here, we show that, in the male rhesus monkey, the postnatal pattern in GnRH pulse generator activity is inversely related to that in neuropeptide Y (NPY) gene and protein expression in the mediobasal hypothalamus and that central administration of an NPY Y1 receptor antagonist to juvenile animals elicits precocious GnRH release. Cell imaging indicated that the developmentally regulated NPY neurons may be located in regions dorsal to the arcuate nucleus. These findings lead us to propose that NPY is a fundamental component of the neurobiological brake restraining the onset of puberty in primates.

Publisher Statement

Originally published as El Majdoubi, M., Sahu, A., Ramaswamy, S., & Plant, T. M. (2000). Neuropeptide Y: a hypothalamic brake restraining the onset of puberty in primates. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 97(11), 6179-6184.