Expression and regulation of the neuropeptide Y Y2 receptor in sensory and autonomic ganglia

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1997 Jan 21;94(2):729-34. doi: 10.1073/pnas.94.2.729.


The Y2 subtype of neuropeptide tyrosine (NPY) receptors (Y2R) and some neuropeptides have been studied with in situ hybridization in sensory and autonomic neurons of rat and monkey. Between 10% and 20% of the lumbar dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neuron profiles (NPs) contain Y2R mRNA in the rat and monkey. In rat DRGs Y2R mRNA is expressed in calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)-positive, medium-sized, and large neurons, that is in a complementary fashion to the Y1R that is located in small CGRP neurons. In monkey DRGs Y2R mRNA is expressed mainly in small neurons. Peripheral axotomy up-regulates the Y2R in small and large DRG neurons in both species. Y2R and NPY mRNAs are colocalized in many large neurons in axotomized rat DRGs. Y2R mRNA is expressed in 50% of the NPs in the nodose ganglion with a modest increase after axotomy. Y2R mRNA is detected in a few NPs in normal rat superior cervical ganglia, with a marked increase after transection of the carotid nerves. No Y2R mRNA-positive, but many (approximately 30%) weakly Y1R mRNA-positive NPs were found in the sphenopalatine ganglion. Finally, Y2R mRNA levels increase in rat spinal motoneurons after axotomy. Thus, under normal circumstances NPY may act on Y1 and Y2Rs expressed, respectively, in small and large CGRP-positive DRG neurons in the rat. Y2R may be an important receptor in the viscero-sensory neurons. Y2Rs may be particularly important after axotomy serving as presynaptic and/or autoreceptors on rat DRG, superior cervical ganglion, and nodose ganglion neurons and as presynaptic receptors in monkey DRG neurons.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Ganglia, Autonomic / physiology*
  • Ganglia, Sensory / physiology*
  • Ganglia, Spinal
  • Gene Expression
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Male
  • Neuropeptide Y / physiology*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptors, Neuropeptide Y / physiology*
  • Superior Cervical Ganglion


  • Neuropeptide Y
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, Neuropeptide Y
  • neuropeptide Y2 receptor