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Glucocorticoids decrease thyrotropin-releasing hormone messenger ribonucleic acid expression in the paraventricular nucleus of the human hypothalamus.

Research group Swaab
Publication year 2005
Published in The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism
Authors A. Alkemade, U.A. Unmehopa, W.M. Wiersinga, D.F. Swaab, E. Fliers

The way glucocorticoids affect TRH mRNA expression in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus is still unclear. In view of its relevance for Cushing’s syndrome and depression, we measured TRH mRNA expression in human hypothalami obtained at autopsy by means of quantitative TRH mRNA in situ hybridization. In corticosteroid-treated subjects (n = 10), TRH mRNA hybridization signal was decreased as compared with matched control subjects (n = 10) (Mann-Whitney U test, P = 0.02). By inference, hypercortisolism as present in patients with Cushing’s syndrome or major depression may contribute to lower serum TSH or symptoms of depression by lowering hypothalamic TRH expression.

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