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Ghrelin is a relatively newly discovered neuroendocrine peptide hormone that is a ligand (agonist) of the ghrelin receptor (growth hormone secretagogue receptor, GHSR). This volume represents a timely review of the state-of-the-art knowledge about this hormone. Ghrelin highlights the structure of mammalian and non-mammalian ghrelins, the biochemistry, and appetite and metabolic effects. The contents then shift to effects on organ systems and disease including cardiac, skeletal and smooth muscle regulation, bone, pregnancy and lactation, and prostate cancer. This hormone plays a key role in the release of growth hormone and, importantly, in energy homeostasis, and is a major factor in bodily growth and weight. Accordingly, this volume will be of interest to endocrinologists, nutritionists, pharmacologists and all professionals, researchers and students interested in the expansion of our biochemical knowledge as it relates to metabolism, growth and other important functions.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780123736857
  • Publisher: Elsevier Science
  • Publication date: 11/8/2007
  • Series: Vitamins and Hormones Series
  • Pages: 388
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Trained in biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Dr. Litwack worked on enzymology and the effects of hormones on enzyme systems. Then he was a Postdoctoral Fellow of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis at the Biochemical Institute of the Sorbonne in Paris. Dr. Litwack's first position was as Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at Rutgers University in 1954. Six years later, he joined the University of Pennsylvania as associate professor and four years later went to the Fels Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Biology, as full professor, eventually becoming Deputy Director of the Institute. In 1991, he accepted the Chair of Pharmacology at Thomas Jefferson University where he is also Deputy Director of the Jefferson Cancer Institute and Associate Director for Basic Science in the Jefferson Cancer Center. Dr. Litwack's work has been in the area of mechanisms of steroid receptor action involving especially the glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptors, immunophi.
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Table of Contents

Contributors     xiii
Preface     xvii
The Structure of Ghrelin   Andreas Kukol     1
Introduction     2
Background     2
Results of Structural Studies     5
Discussion     9
Conclusions     11
References     11
Biochemistry of Ghrelin Precursor Peptides   Chris J. Pemberton   A. Mark Richards     13
Introduction     14
Ghrelin Gene Precursors     15
Posttranslational Products of Proghrelin     17
Distribution of Proghrelin Peptides     22
Proghrelin Peptides in Lower Vertebrates     24
Summary     25
References     25
Structure of Mammalian and Nonmammalian Ghrelins   Masayasu Kojima   Takanori Ida   Takahiro Sato     31
Introduction     32
Mammalian Ghrelin     33
Nonmammalian Ghrelin     36
Ghrelin and Motilin Family     40
Activity Change by Fatty Acid Chain Length of Ghrelin     41
Putative Ghrelin Acyl-Modifying Enzyme     41
Conclusion     43
References     43
The Growth HormoneSecretagogue Receptor   Conrad Russel Young Cruz   Roy G. Smith     47
Introduction: A Case of Reverse Pharmacology     48
Genetics and Molecular Biology     49
Regulation of Gene Expression     55
Signal Transduction     58
GHSR1a: Tissue Distribution and Functions in Different Organ Systems     62
Other Ligands     74
Evidence for Other Receptors     77
Future Directions     78
References     79
Basic Aspects of Ghrelin Action   Yolanda Pazos   Felipe F. Casanueva   Jesus P. Camina     89
Introduction     90
Structure of GHSR1a: A G-Protein-Coupled Receptor     91
How to Define the Role of the System Ghrelin/GHSR1a?     96
Are There Alternative Ligands for the GHSR1a?     97
Endocytosis of GHSR1a     98
Homo- or Heteromeric Complexes for GHSR1a     99
GHSR1a: G-Protein-Signaling Pathways     101
A Brief Commentary: "New" Receptors for Ghrelin and Desacyl Ghrelin     107
Concluding Remarks     108
References     109
Appetite and Metabolic Effects of Ghrelin and Cannabinoids: Involvement of AMP-Activated Protein Kinase   Hinke van Thuijl   Blerina Kola   Marta Korbonits     121
Introduction     122
Ghrelin     122
Cannabiroids     127
Adenosine Monophosphate-Activated Protein Kinase     131
The Effects of Ghrelin and Cannabinoids on AMPK     135
References     138
Ghrelin and Feedback Systems   Katsunori Nonogaki     149
Introduction     150
Regulation of Ghrelin Secretion     151
Afferent Pathways of Ghrelin from the Stomach to the Hypothalamus     158
Hyperphagia, Obesity, and Des-acyl Ghrelin     159
Hypothalamic Gene Expression and Plasma Des-acyl Ghrelin     161
Conclusion     161
References     162
Ghrelin Gene-Related Peptides Modulate Rat White Adiposity   Andres Giovambattista   Rolf C. Gaillard   Eduardo Spinedi     171
Introduction     172
Effects of Ghrelin on Rat Retroperitoneal Adipocyte Endocrine Functions     176
Desacyl Ghrelin as a Potential Physiological Modulator of Adiposity     183
Discussion and Remarks     193
References     199
Cardiac, Skeletal, and Smooth Muscle Regulation by Ghrelin   Adelino F. Leite-Moreira    Amandio Rocha-Sousa   Tiago Henriques-Coelho     207
Introduction     208
Structure and Distribution of Ghrelin     210
Contractile Effects of Ghrelin     217
References     230
Ghrelin and Bone   Martijn van der Velde   Patric Delhanty   Bram van der Eerden   Aart Jan van der Lely   Johannes van Leeuwen     239
Bone Balance: Resorption and Formation     239
Interplay Between the Gastrointestinal System and Bone: The Effect of Gastrectomy/Fundectomy on Bone     240
Effects of GH and GHS on Bone Metabolism     242
Correlation Between Ghrelin and Bone Parameters in Clinical Studies     244
Effects of Ghrelin on Osteoblastic Cells In Vitro     245
Conclusions     249
References     249
Ghrelin in Pregnancy and Lactation   Jens Fuglsang     259
Introduction     260
GHSRs in Pregnancy     260
Ghrelin in the Fallopian Tubes, Uterus, and Placenta     262
Ghrelin Secretion in Pregnancy     262
Placenta as a Source of Ghrelin?     265
Physiological Actions of Ghrelin in Pregnancy     266
Lactation     273
Fetal Ghrelin     274
Future Directions for Research     276
Summary     276
References     277
Ghrelin and Reproduction: Ghrelin as Novel Regulator of the Gonadotropic Axis   Manuel Tena-Sempere     285
Introduction: Ghrelin is a Multifunctional Regulator with Key Roles in Energy Balance     286
Neuroendocrine Control of Reproduction: The Gonadotropic Axis     287
Reproduction and the Energy Status are Functionally Linked     288
Ghrelin as Putative Regulator of the Gonadotropic Axis     289
Role of Ghrelin in the Control of Gonadotropin Secretion     289
Putative Roles of Ghrelin in Puberty Onset     291
Molecular Diversity of Ghrelin: Reproductive Effects of UAG and Obestatin     292
Expression and Direct Actions of Ghrelin in the Gonads     293
Futures Perspectives and Conclusions     295
References     298
Ghrelin and Prostate Cancer   Fabio Lanfranco   Matteo Baldi   Paola Cassoni   Martino Bosco   Corrado Ghe   Giampiero Muccioli     301
Prostate Cancer     302
Influences of Hormones on Prostate Cancer Progression     303
The Peptide Hormone Ghrelin and Prostate Cancer      307
Conclusions     315
References     316
Novel Connections Between the Neuroendocrine and Immune Systems: The Ghrelin Immunoregulatory Network   Dennis D. Taub     325
Neuroendocrine-Immune Interactions     326
The Growth Hormone Secretagogue Receptor     327
Ghrelin: Hormone or Cytokine?     329
Conclusions     341
References     342
Index     347
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