NEUROPHARMACOLOGICAL INVESTIGATION OF VASOPRESSIN, A PUTATIVE MEMORY NEURAL PEPTIDE (NEUROPEPTIDE, NEUROHYPOPHYSENE, HORMONES).
AuthorBRINTON, ROBERTA EILEEN.
AdvisorYamamura, Henry I.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractVasopressin, or antidiurectic hormone, has long been known to have peripheral antidiuretic and vasoconstrictor properties. However, more recently a body of research has shown that vasopressin (AVP) affects central nervous system functions by to influencing memory processes. In light of the growing evidence for the role of vasopressin (AVP) in memory, my dissertation research was designed to test the hypothesis that AVP acts as a neuromodulator in the CNS. To test this hypothesis criteria used to establish neurotransmitter status was applied to AVP. Thus, a series of experiments were carried out to investigate (1) AVP brain levels; (2) release of AVP in the CNS; (3) existence of specific AVP binding sites in brain and finally, (4) existence of AVP metabolite peptide, AVP (4-9), binding sites in brain. Results of these experiments indicate that AVP meets some of the criteria for neuromodulator status in the CNS. The detection of AVP in brain, elucidation of the modulatory influence of a CNS depressant upon the content and release of AVP in brain, demonstration and characterization of the regional distribution for putative AVP receptors in brain along with binding sites for a metabolite peptide of AVP, all suggest that AVP acts through receptors within the CNS to influence memory processes.