Physiology

Controlled Growth

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Science  15 Jun 2001:
Vol. 292, Issue 5524, pp. 1967
DOI: 10.1126/science.292.5524.1967d

Thyroid hormone (triiodothyronine or T3) is known to be involved in energy metabolism and growth, and it exerts its action through binding to specific transcription factors that regulate gene expression. Koritschoner et al. make a connection between thyroid hormone and the protein tubby, which is known to be involved in adult-onset obesity (for more on tubby, see Santagata et al., Research Article, p. 2041 and Cantley, Perspective, p. 2019, this issue). Adult rats from which the thyroid had been removed surgically displayed a spectrum of changes in the expression of tubby. For instance, there was a substantial decrease of both messenger RNA and protein in cerebellar Purkinje cells that could be reversed by injection of thyroxine (a thyroid hormone precursor that crosses the blood-brain barrier). There were no clear T3-dependent changes in tubby levels in the hypothalamic region, although the in vivo phenomena were mirrored by T3-induced changes in tubby expression in the PC12 cell line. — GJC

EMBO Reports, 2, 499 (2001).

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