Differential and gonad stage-dependent roles of kisspeptin1 and kisspeptin2 in reproduction in the modern teleosts, Morone species

Nilli Zmora, John Stubblefield, Zarirah Zulperi, Jakob Biran, Berta Levavi-Sivan, Jose Antonio Muñoz-Cueto, Yonathan Zohar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

119 Scopus citations


Kisspeptin is an important regulator of reproduction in many vertebrates. The involvement of the two kisspeptins, Kiss1 and Kiss2, and their receptors, Gpr54-1 and Gpr54-2, in controlling reproduction was studied in the brains of the modern teleosts, striped and hybrid basses. In situ hybridization and laser capture microdissection followed by quantitative RT (QRT)-PCR detected coexpression of kiss1 and kiss2 in the hypothalamic nucleus of the lateral recess. Neurons expressing gpr54-1 and gpr54-2 were detected in several brain regions. In the preoptic area, gpr54-2 was colocalized in GnRH1 neurons while gpr54-1 was expressed in cells attached to GnRH1 fibers, indicating two different modes of GnRH1 regulation. The expression of all four genes was measured in the brains of males and females at different life stages using QRT-PCR. The levels of kiss1 and gpr54-1 mRNA, the latter being expressed in minute levels, were consistently lower than those of kiss2 and gpr54-2. While neither gene's expression increased at prepuberty, all were dramatically elevated in mature females. The levels of kiss2 mRNA increased also in mature males. Kiss1 peptide was less potent than Kiss2 in elevating plasma luteinizing hormone levels and in up-regulating gnrh1 and gpr54-2 expression in prepubertal hybrid bass in vivo. In contrast, during recrudescence, Kiss1 was more potent than Kiss2 in inducing luteinizing hormone release, and Kiss2 down-regulated gnrh1 and gpr54-2 expression. This is the first report in fish to demonstrate the alternating actions and the importance of both neuropeptides for reproduction. The organization of the kisspeptin system suggests a transitional evolutionary state between early to late evolving vertebrates.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number177
JournalBiology of Reproduction
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2012


  • Fish
  • Kisspeptin
  • Kisspeptin receptor
  • Reproduction


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