In vitro evidence that leptin suppresses melatonin secretion during long days and stimulates its secretion during short days in seasonal breeding ewes. Academic Article uri icon


  • Recent observations in seasonal-breeding mammals indicate that the hypothalamus is programmed to become leptin resistant during long days (LD) and leptin sensitive during short days (SD). These observations support the possibility that photoperiod mediates at least part of its effects on melatonin secretion through changes in leptin sensitivity. Herein we examined the interaction of season and recombinant ovine leptin (oleptin) on melatonin secretion by pineal explants in short-term culture. Glands were collected after sunset from eight ewes during LD (March, April, May, June) and from an additional eight ewes during SD (September, October, November, December). Glands were transected saggitally and coronally into quarters, with each equilibrated in 2.5ml of DMEM for 120min, followed by a 3h incubation in medium containing either 0 or 50ng/ml of oleptin. Treatment with oleptin reduced (P<0.001) melatonin secretion compared to controls during LD by approximately 22% at 2, 2.5 and 3h of culture. However, in cultures from glands collected during SD, oleptin stimulated (P<0.078) melatonin secretion approximately 50% compared to control. These effects were consistent throughout each respective season. We conclude that the secretion of melatonin from the ovine pineal gland is negatively responsive to leptin during LD, whereas leptin may stimulate melatonin secretion during SD.

published proceedings

  • Domest Anim Endocrinol

author list (cited authors)

  • Zieba, D. A., Klocek, B., Williams, G. L., Romanowicz, K., Boliglowa, L., & Wozniak, M.

citation count

  • 33

complete list of authors

  • Zieba, Dorota A||Klocek, Beata||Williams, Gary L||Romanowicz, Katarzyna||Boliglowa, Lukasz||Wozniak, Malgorzata

publication date

  • October 2007