Topics in Neuroendocrinology, Vol. 38 by Author Unknown

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In general, neurons in the central nervous system of vertebrates are sensitive to at least two types of neurotransmitters, but are rather insensitive to blood-borne substances. , glutamate, effect the polarization state of the neuronal membrane. The issue to discuss then concerns the mechanisms by which the receptive pole transduces the synaptic inputs Referem e~ P . 28 24 J. P. S C H A D ~AND H. VAN WILGENBURG and the blood-borne hormones. The questions are: do we have to account for an interaction of the two classes of substances; are the receptor mechanisms the same or different: should hormones, as far as the postsynaptic neuronal surface is concerned, be regarded as neurotransmitters?

We have therefore studied the hormone output in response to an increase in external potassium from isolated neurohypophyses incubated in sodium deficient solutions in which iso-osmolarity and ionic strength were maintained by the addition of equimolar amounts of choline chloride. Fig. 2 mM throughout. It may be readily seen that the standard stimulus is most effective at the lowest NaCl concentration tested (50 mM), and is still more effective at an intermediate (100 mM) than at the normal concentration (150 mM).

8 Ca concentration ( m M ) Fig. 4. Relationship between calcium concentration and hormone output in response to excess KCI [5h mM). Referem es a. 37 36 J . J . DREIFUSS et al. hormones increases approximately linearly with the [Ca++]/[Na+]2 ratio. The fact that the release process depends indirectly on the square of the external sodium concentration, whereas the height of the action potential is a direct function of external NaCI, represents further experimental evidence that hormone secretion and the generation of propagated action potentials depend on different ionic conductance changes of the axon membrane.

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