The effects of adrenalectomy and aldosterone replacement in transgenic mice expressing antisense RNA to the type 2 glucocorticoid receptor

Physiol Behav. 2002 Nov;77(2-3):417-23. doi: 10.1016/s0031-9384(02)00881-8.


Bilateral adrenalectomy (ADX) either prevents or attenuates obesity in several animal models. Mice that express an antisense RNA to the glucocorticoid receptor (GCR) are obese. The present study was conducted to examine the effects of ADX and aldosterone (ALDO) replacement on the rate of weight gain and body composition of mice bearing an antisense GCR gene construct. Twenty-eight male transgenic mice bearing the antisense GCR construct and 16 male B6C/3F1 mice were either bilaterally ADX or given sham operations. At the time of surgery, some of the ADX mice and all of the sham-operated mice were implanted with 100-mg cholesterol (CHOL) pellets inserted subcutaneously in the subscapular region. The remaining ADX mice were implanted with 100-mg 1% w/w ALDO pellets using CHOL as vehicle. All mice were returned to their home cages for 2 weeks. They were then decapitated and the blood was collected for corticosterone, ALDO, insulin, and leptin radioimmunoassay. Carcasses were eviscerated and prepared for gravimetric analyses, including bomb calorimetry. ADX resulted in a significant drop in carcass fat in both transgenic and wildtype groups. ALDO prevented the decrease in carcass fat in both groups. Two weeks after ADX, transgenic mice were as fat as sham-operated wildtype controls, whereas both sham-operated and ALDO-treated transgenic groups were significantly fatter. Despite observing a reliable decrease in carcass fat following ADX, no corresponding decrease in circulating leptin was found.

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / metabolism
  • Adrenalectomy*
  • Aldosterone / administration & dosage
  • Aldosterone / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Body Composition / drug effects
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Body Weight / genetics
  • Drug Implants
  • Insulin / blood
  • Leptin / blood
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • RNA, Antisense / biosynthesis*
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid / biosynthesis*


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Blood Glucose
  • Drug Implants
  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • RNA, Antisense
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid
  • Aldosterone