Plasticity of melanotrope cell regulations in Xenopus laevis

Eric W. Roubos, Diane C.W.A. Van Wijk, Tamás Kozicz, Wim J.J.M. Scheenen, Bruce G. Jenks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This review focuses on the plasticity of the regulation of a particular neuroendocrine transducer cell, the melanotrope cell in the pituitary pars intermedia of the amphibian Xenopus laevis. This cell type is a suitable model to study the relationship between various external regulatory inputs and the secretion of an adaptive endocrine message, in this case the release of α-melanophore-stimulating hormone, which activates skin melanophores to darken when the animal is placed on a dark background. Information about the environmental conditions is processed by various brain centres, in the hypothalamus and elsewhere, that eventually control the activity of the melanotrope cell regarding hormone production and secretion. The review discusses the roles of these hypothalamic and extrahypothalamic nuclei, their neurochemical messengers acting on the melanotrope, and the external stimuli they mediate to control melanotrope cell functioning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2082-2086
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2010


  • Magnocellular nucleus
  • Neuropeptides
  • POMC
  • Plasticity
  • Suprachiasmatic nucleus
  • α-MSH

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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