Vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) is a prolactin (PRL)-releasing factor whose activity in avian species is believed to be mediated by a specific VIP receptor (VIP-R). Circulating PRL levels are closely related to hypothalamic VIP immunoreactivity, hypothalamic VIP mRNA content, and hypophysial-portal blood VIP concentrations in turkeys. In the present study, a turkey VIP-R (tVIP-R) cDNA was cloned and its mRNA abundance was quantified in various tissues during different reproductive stages. The 2347-bp tVIP-R cDNA encoded a 457 amino acid protein, with a predicted Mr of 52 kDa. The full-length cDNA shares approximately 55% similarity with the mammalian VIP receptor-1. Northern blot analysis revealed that a major 2.7-kb transcript was expressed in laying hen pituitaries. Furthermore, two minor tVIP-R transcripts of 3.7 and 3.4 kb were observed. Semiquantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was performed using RNA from various turkey brain and peripheral tissues throughout the reproductive cycle. The steady-state levels of pituitary tVIP-R mRNA changed during the reproductive cycle, whereas mRNA expression in other tissues was not affected. The steady-state levels of tVIP-R mRNA were only affected in the pituitary, whereas mRNA expression in any of the other tissues examined following the immunization of turkeys against VIP were not affected.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology