Multiple signalling modalities mediated by dendritic exocytosis of oxytocin and vasopressin

Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2015 Jul 5;370(1672):20140182. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0182.


The mammalian hypothalamic magnocellular neurons of the supraoptic and paraventricular nuclei are among the best understood of all peptidergic neurons. Through their anatomical features, vasopressin- and oxytocin-containing neurons have revealed many important aspects of dendritic functions. Here, we review our understanding of the mechanisms of somato-dendritic peptide release, and the effects of autocrine, paracrine and hormone-like signalling on neuronal networks and behaviour.

Keywords: calcium; homeostasis; hypothalamus; paraventricular nucleus; priming; supraoptic nucleus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Communication / physiology*
  • Dendrites / metabolism*
  • Exocytosis / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System / physiology*
  • Hypothalamus / cytology*
  • Hypothalamus / physiology
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Oxytocin / metabolism*
  • Vasopressins / metabolism*


  • Vasopressins
  • Oxytocin