The effects of potassium, 5-hydrocytryptamine, adrenocorticotrophin and angiotensin II on the concentration of adenosine 3':5'-cyclic monophosphate in suspensions of dispersed rat adrenal zona glomerulosa and zona fasciculata cells

Biochem J. 1974 Aug;142(2):391-400. doi: 10.1042/bj1420391.


Dispersed rat adrenal cells prepared from both the capsule and the decapsulated gland were used to investigate the effects on cyclic AMP accumulation of known stimuli of steroidogenesis [ACTH (adrenocorticotrophin), angiotensin II, K(+) ions and 5-hydroxytryptamine]. Since glomerulosa-cell preparations from capsular strippings are normally contaminated with a proportion of fasciculata cells, cells purified by fractionation on a bovine serum albumin gradient were also used. The results showed that: (1) ACTH and angiotensin II stimulated cyclic AMP accumulation in both fractionated and unfractionated zona fasciculata cells; (2) 5-hydroxytryptamine and an increased extracellular K(+) concentration (from 3.6 to 8.4mm) had no effect on cyclic AMP concentrations in fasciculata cell preparations; (3) the addition of ACTH, angiotensin II, 5-hydroxytryptamine or K(+) to the incubation medium resulted in increased cyclic AMP concentrations in unpurified zona glomerulosa cell preparations; (4) fractionation and hence the virtual elimination of fasciculata contamination, did not affect the response to 5-hydroxytryptamine and increased K(+) concentration. However, the responses to ACTH and angiotensin II were markedly lowered but not abolished. These results strongly suggest a link between cyclic AMP production and steroidogenesis in the zone of the adrenal gland that specifically secretes aldosterone. All four agents used stimulated both steroid output and cyclic AMP accumulation. However, at certain doses of 5-hydroxytryptamine, K(+) and angiotensin II the significant increases in corticosterone output were not accompanied by measurable increases in cyclic AMP accumulation.

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Glands / drug effects*
  • Adrenal Glands / metabolism
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / pharmacology*
  • Aldosterone / metabolism
  • Angiotensin II / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Chromatography, Ion Exchange
  • Cyclic AMP / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Potassium / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Serotonin / pharmacology*
  • Serum Albumin, Bovine
  • Steroids / biosynthesis
  • Tritium


  • Steroids
  • Tritium
  • Angiotensin II
  • Serum Albumin, Bovine
  • Serotonin
  • Aldosterone
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone
  • Cyclic AMP
  • Potassium