Perry Barrett

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Seasonal adaptations in physiology exhibited by many animals involve an interface between biological timing and specific neuroendocrine systems, but the molecular basis of this interface is unknown. In this study of Siberian hamsters, we show that the availability of thyroid hormone within the hypothalamus is a key determinant of seasonal transitions. The(More)
A pre-requisite to understanding the physiological mechanisms of action of melatonin is the identification of the target sites where the hormone acts. The radioligand 2-[125I]iodo-melatonin has been used extensively to localize binding sites in both the brain and peripheral tissues. In general these binding sites have been found to be high affinity, with Kd(More)
We have isolated a novel variant of the Mel 1a melatonin receptor from an ovine PT cDNA library. Relative to the reported sequence for the Mel 1a melatonin receptor there are 8 changes in the DNA sequence. Only 3 of these result in amino acid substitutions, one in extracellular loop 3 and two in the carboxy-terminal tail. We have designated the novel(More)
The mammalian Per1 gene is expressed in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, where it is thought to play a critical role in the generation of circadian rhythms. Per1 mRNA also is expressed in other tissues. Its expression in the pars tuberalis (PT) of the pituitary is noteworthy because, like the suprachiasmatic nucleus, it is a known site of(More)
Energy dense, high fat, high sugar, foods and beverages in our diet are a major contributor to the escalating global obesity problem. Here, we examine the physiological and neuroendocrine effects of feeding rats a solid high-energy (HE) diet with or without a liquid supplement (Ensure) and the consequence of subsequently transferring animals back to chow(More)
Site-directed mutagenesis was used to study two residues, valine 208 and histidine 211, in transmembrane domain 5 of the ovine Mel1a beta melatonin receptor. A series of 4 mutants were constructed (V208A, V208L, H211F, H211L), and each engineered to contain a FLAG-epitope. Immunocytochemistry demonstrated that all the mutants were expressed in COS-7 cells(More)
Mel 1a melatonin receptors belong to the super-family of guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory protein (G protein)-coupled receptors. So far, interest in Mel 1a receptor signaling has focused mainly on the modulation of the adenylyl cyclase pathway via pertussis toxin (PTX)-sensitive G proteins. To further investigate signaling of the human Mel 1a receptor,(More)
The X-linked orphan receptor GPR50 shares 45% homology with the melatonin receptors, yet its ligand and physiological function remain unknown. Here we report that mice lacking functional GPR50 through insertion of a lacZ gene into the coding sequence of GPR50 exhibit an altered metabolic phenotype. GPR50 knockout mice maintained on normal chow exhibit lower(More)
A cyclic AMP response element (CRE)-luciferase reporter gene assay was used to characterise the functional responses of human melatonin mt(1) and human melatonin MT(2) receptors, stably expressed in the human embryonic kidney cell line HEK293, to a series of six naphthalenic analogues of melatonin. By comparison to the observed melatonin-mediated inhibition(More)
The Siberian hamster survives winter by decreasing food intake and catabolizing abdominal fat reserves, resulting in a sustained, profound loss of body weight. VGF gene expression is photoperiodically regulated in the hypothalamus with significantly higher expression in lean Siberian hamsters. The aim of this study was to investigate the role of VGF in(More)