Bilateral intrahypothalamic injections of the brain metabolite quinolinic acid (QUIN) were made in an attempt to examine its effects on the secretion of LH, PRL, GH and TSH. QUIN, a neuroexcitatory amino acid with close structural similarities to glutamate, kainate and N-methylaspartate, was infused into unanesthetized male rats, the animals sacrificed 7.5 min later, and serum hormone concentrations determined by radioimmunoassay. QUIN caused surges in LH, PRL and GH release (316, 607 and 1,134% of control, respectively, at 50 μg QUIN) without affecting the serum concentrations of TSH. At lower doses, a preferential effect of QUIN on PRL release was observed. All QUIN-induced hormonal changes were inhibited by concomitant administration of the specific antagonist (-)-2-amino-7-phosphonoheptanoic acid, indicating the presence of QUIN-sensitive receptors on neurons which are intimately associated with endocrine regulation. Moreover, because QUIN-treated animals exhibited behavioral signs of seizure activity and neuroendocrine dysfunction has been reported to occur in human convulsive disorders, the data are also of interest in view of a possible mechanistic link between epileptic phenomena and hormone secretion.
- Quinolinic acid
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience