Meeting Abstract

P2.177  Thursday, Jan. 5  Cloning and tissue-specific expression of CRH and its binding protein from the hypothalamus of the red-eared slider turtle, Trachemys scripta elegans ROSS, AM*; THOMPSON, JA; VALVERDE, RA; Southeastern Louisiana University; Southeastern Louisiana University; Southeastern Louisiana University Ashley.Ross-2@selu.edu

Organisms respond to challenging environmental variation by activating a hormonal cascade initiated by the neuropeptide corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) from the hypothalamus. This signal triggers the release of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) from the pituitary, which in turn stimulates the release of corticosterone from the adrenal gland. Corticosterone then mobilizes energy reserves to stabilize homeostatic systems in vertebrates. Thus, this endocrine stress response mediates the adaptation of the organism to the challenge. This response is modulated by a CRH-binding protein (CRHBP), which binds CRH with high affinity, preventing an over-reaction of the organism to the stressor. In reptiles, the structure of this protein has not been elucidated. The purpose of this project was to compare the expression profiles of CRH and CRHBP in multiple tissues of the red-eared slider turtle, Trachemys scripta elegans, specifically in response to acute immobilization stress. These data may help elucidate the mechanisms by which turtles, and other wildlife, cope with pollutants in their natural environment.