Cellular localization of relaxin-like gonad-stimulating peptide expression in Asterias rubens: New insights into neurohormonal control of spawning in starfish.
J Comp Neurol
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Gamete maturation and spawning in starfish is triggered by a gonad-stimulating substance (GSS), which is present in extracts of the radial nerve cords. Purification of GSS from the starfish Patiria pectinifera identified GSS as a relaxin-like polypeptide, which is now known as relaxin-like gonad-stimulating peptide (RGP). Cells expressing RGP in the radial nerve cord of P. pectinifera have been visualized, but the presence of RGP-expressing cells in other parts of the starfish body has not been investigated. Here we addressed this issue in the starfish Asterias rubens. An A. rubens RGP (AruRGP) precursor cDNA was sequenced and the A chain and B chain that form AruRGP were detected in A. rubens radial nerve cord extracts using mass spectrometry. Comparison of the bioactivity of AruRGP and P. pectinifera RGP (PpeRGP) revealed that both polypeptides induce oocyte maturation and ovulation in A. rubens ovarian fragments, but AruRGP is more potent than PpeRGP. Analysis of the expression of AruRGP in A. rubens using mRNA in situ hybridization revealed cells expressing RGP in the radial nerve cords, circumoral nerve ring, and tube feet. Furthermore, a band of RGP-expressing cells was identified in the body wall epithelium lining the cavity that surrounds the sensory terminal tentacle and optic cushion at the tips of the arms. Discovery of these RGP-expressing cells closely associated with sensory organs in the arm tips is an important finding because these cells are candidate physiological mediators for hormonal control of starfish spawning in response to environmental cues. J. Comp. Neurol., 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
AuthorsLin, M; Mita, M; Egertová, M; Zampronio, CG; Jones, AM; Elphick, MR
- Psychology