The effects of thyroid hormones (TH) on the enzyme level and activity of neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) were studied in the rat cerebral cortex during postnatal life. As revealed by arginine/citrulline conversion assay and Western blot analysis of the homogenate of the parietal cortex T4 significantly increased nNOS activity and nNOS protein level to 153 ± 25% and to 178 ± 20%, respectively. In contrast, 6-n-propyl-2-thyouracil (PTU) decreased nNOS activity and nNOS level to 45 ± 10% and to 19 ± 4%, respectively. The number of nNOS-immunoreactive neurons did not change after either T4 or PTU treatment, however, following T4 administration the percentage of intensively immunoreactive neurons increased to 85 ± 3% compared to control (65 ± 6%), whereas it decreased to 49 ± 2% after PTU treatment. Our findings indicate that abnormal TH levels differentially regulate the activity and the level of nNOS and suggest a cross-talk between the TH and NO signaling pathway in the developing cerebral cortex of rats.
- Cerebral cortex
- Nitric oxide synthase
- Thyroid hormone
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience