Short communication: expression of peptide YY, proglucagon, neuropeptide Y receptor Y2, and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor in bovine peripheral tissues

J Dairy Sci. 2012 Sep;95(9):5089-5094. doi: 10.3168/jds.2011-5311.


The role of distal gut signals in control of feed intake and metabolism in cattle has received scant attention. Peptide YY (PYY) and glucagon-like peptide-1, which are secreted from enteroendocrine cells of the distal gut in monogastrics have several functions, including regulation of energy balance. However, little is known of the tissue expression of these peptides and their receptors in cattle. The aim of the current study was to characterize the tissue distribution of PYY, neuropeptide Y receptor Y2 (Y2), proglucagon (GCG), and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP1R) in various peripheral tissues of cattle. Four male 7-wk-old dairy calves were euthanized and 16 peripheral tissues were collected. Conventional PCR and quantitative real-time PCR were performed to confirm tissue expression and quantify the transcript abundance in various tissues. The results of conventional PCR revealed that mRNA for both PYY and Y2 was detectable in the rumen, abomasum, duodenum, jejunum, ileum, and colon but not in other tissues. Quantitative real-time PCR data demonstrated that PYY mRNA was 2- to 3-fold greater in the pancreas, kidney, and heart relative to the liver. By conventional PCR, GCG mRNA was detected in the abomasum, duodenum, jejunum, ileum, and colon and GLP1R mRNA was expressed in all gut segments, pancreas, spleen, and kidney. Quantitative real-time PCR data demonstrated that, relative to transcript abundance in the liver, GCG mRNA was 4- to 40-fold higher from abomasum to colon, and GLP1R mRNA was 50- to 300-fold higher from the rumen to colon, 14-fold greater in the pancreas, 18-fold higher in the spleen, and 166-fold greater in the kidney. The tissue distribution of PYY, GCG, and their receptors observed in the current study is, in general, consistent with expression patterns in monogastrics. The predominant expression of PYY, Y2, and GCG in the gut, and the presence of GLP1R in multiple peripheral tissues suggest a role for PYY in controlling gut functions and for GLP-1 in regulating multiple physiological functions in cattle.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle / metabolism
  • Cattle / physiology*
  • Digestive System / chemistry
  • Digestive System / metabolism
  • Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor
  • Male
  • Neuropeptide Y / analysis
  • Neuropeptide Y / physiology*
  • Peptide YY / analysis
  • Peptide YY / physiology*
  • Proglucagon / analysis
  • Proglucagon / physiology*
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction / veterinary
  • Receptors, Glucagon / analysis
  • Receptors, Glucagon / physiology*
  • Receptors, Neuropeptide Y / analysis
  • Receptors, Neuropeptide Y / physiology*


  • Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor
  • Neuropeptide Y
  • Receptors, Glucagon
  • Receptors, Neuropeptide Y
  • neuropeptide Y2 receptor
  • Peptide YY
  • Proglucagon