Expression of glucocorticoid receptor and coactivators in ependymal cells of male rats

Acta Histochem Cytochem. 2014 Aug 29;47(4):165-74. doi: 10.1267/ahc.14021. Epub 2014 Jul 31.


Glucocorticoid receptor (GR) is a ligand-activated nuclear receptor which is widely distributed in the brain. Many types of neurons and glial cells are known to express GR, but the expression of GR in ependymal cells has yet to be identified. The present study therefore was undertaken to determine whether ependymal cells express GR and coactivators of GR, such as steroid receptor coactivator 1 (SRC-1) and p300. GR immunoreactivity was found in cells immunopositive to vimentin, a marker of ependymal cells, around the third ventricle (3V), the lateral ventricle (LV), the cerebral aqueduct and the fourth ventricle (4V), whereas the expression of GR in vimentin-immunoreactive (ir) cells was significantly reduced by adrenalectomy (ADX) in male rats. Vimentin-ir cells also expressed both SRC-1 and p300 at around 3V, LV, the cerebral aqueduct and 4V. ADX had no effect on the expression of SRC-1 or p300 in vimentin-ir cells. These results suggest that glucocorticoid may exert effects on ependymal cells through binding to GR followed by association with SRC-1 and p300 to maintain brain environment under stressful conditions.

Keywords: adrenalectomy; ependymal cell; glucocorticoid receptor; p300; steroid receptor coactivator 1 (SRC-1).