The distribution of binding sites in the rat CNS for a synthetic analogue of eel calcitonin, [Asu1-7]eel calcitonin (carboCT) was investigated. This distribution was compared to that for the natural peptide to see whether a modified molecule would also reveal different classes of binding sites for CT. The regional distribution of 125I-carboCT binding in coronal sections of rat CNS was examined by an in vitro autoradiographic technique. Non-specific binding was assessed after addition of excess cold carboCT or eel CT and the results showed that carboCT binding is specific and that it is displaced equally by cold carboCT and by eel CT. There was dense labelling in the nucleus accumbens, in the tractus striohypothalamicus, in the anterior and posterior part of the hypothalamus except for the nucleus ventromedialis, in the amygdala, in the pars medialis of the reticular formation, in the nucleus ruber, in the periventricular gray and in the raphe magnus. Grains were less dense in the hypothalamus lateralis, in the substantia nigra and in the nucleus interpeduncularis. In contrast to eel CT, carboCT did not bind in the spinal cord, nor did carboCT prevent eel CT binding in this area, whereas it was able to prevent it in the brain. These results are consistent with the existence of different classes of binding sites for CT in rat brain and in spinal cord, and indicate that the substitution of the S-S bond with a C-C bond in the eel CT molecule makes the peptide more selective for one class of binding sites.
- Eel calcitonin
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