Distribution of corticotropin-releasing factor in the tree shrew brain

Brain Res. 2015 Aug 27;1618:270-85. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2015.06.004. Epub 2015 Jun 12.


Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) in the brain plays an important role in regulations of physiological and behavioral processes, yet CRF distribution in tree shrew brain has not been thoroughly and systematically reported. Here we examined the distribution of CRF immunoreactivity in the brain of tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri chinensis) using immunohistochemical techniques. CRF-immunoreactive (-ir) cells and fibers were present in the rhinencephalon, telencephalon, diencephalon, mesencephalon, metencephalon and myelencephalon of saline- and colchicine-treated tree shrews. Laminar distribution of CRF-ir cells was found in the main olfactory bulb and neocortex. Compared with saline-treated tree shrews, a larger number of CRF-ir cells in colchicine-treated tree shrews were found in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus, medial preoptic area, dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus, reuniens thalamic nucleus, inferior colliculus, Edinger-Westphal nucleus, median raphe nucleus, locus coeruleus, parabrachial nucleus, dorsal tegmental nucleus, lateral reticular nucleus, and inferior olive. CRF-ir fibers from the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus projected toward and through the internal zone of the median eminence. In addition, density of CRF immunoreactivity is significantly different in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, central amygdaloid nucleus, suprachiasmatic nucleus, median raphe nucleus, Edinger-Westphal nucleus, locus coeruleus and inferior olive between tree shrews and rats after saline or colchicine treatment. Our findings provide, for the first time, the comprehensive description of CRF immunoreactivity and whole brain mapping of CRF in tree shrews, which is an anatomical basis for the participation of CRF system in the regulation of numerous behaviors.

Keywords: Amygdala; Hippocampus; Locus coeruleus; Olfactory; Paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Brain / drug effects
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Cell Count
  • Colchicine / analogs & derivatives
  • Colchicine / pharmacology
  • Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Tupaiidae


  • Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • colchiceine
  • Colchicine