Nicotine up-regulates expression of orexin and its...[Endocrinology. 2000] - PubMed Result
Nicotine up-regulates expression of orexin and its receptors in rat brain.
Kane JK, Parker SL, Matta SG, Fu Y, Sharp BM, Li MD.
Department of Pharmacology, University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Memphis 38163, USA.
Orexins are two recently discovered neuropeptides that can stimulate food intake. As the chronic use of tobacco typically leads to a reduction in body weight, it is of interest to determine whether nicotine, the major biologically active tobacco ingredient, has an effect on orexin metabolism in the brain. Using a semiquantitative RT-PCR technique, the levels of messenger RNA (mRNA) for prepro-orexin, orexin A (OX1-R) and orexin B (OX2-R) receptors were 20-50% higher in rats receiving nicotine for 14 days at the level of 2-4 mg/kg day compared with rats receiving saline solvent alone. In animals treated with nicotine at 4 mg/kg x day, the expression levels of mRNA for prepro-orexin, OX1-R, and OX2-R were significantly higher compared with those in either the free-feeding control or pair-fed saline control rats. RIA data indicated that both orexin A and orexin B peptide levels were significantly elevated (45-54%; P < 0.01) in the dorsomedial nucleus (DMH) of the nicotine-treated rats compared with either solvent-only or pair-fed controls. Additionally, orexin B was significantly elevated (83%; P < 0.01), over levels in both types of the control animals, in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) region.
In summary, we demonstrated that an inverse association between nicotine and food intake as well as body weight held with doses comparable to those consumed by average human smokers. Moreover, our data indicated that chronic exposure to nicotine can induce a long-term increase in the expression levels of prepro-orexin and their receptor mRNA in the rat hypothalamus and in the levels of orexin A in the DMH and orexin B in the DMH and PVN among the six hypothalamic regions that we examined.