Letter | Published:

Peptide factor extracted from molluscan ganglia that modulates bursting pacemaker activity

Naturevolume 254pages7274 (1975) | Download Citation



NEUROHORMONES have been suggested as long term regulators of the physiology and biochemistry of nervous tissue1–3. Long term changes in the electrophysiology and biochemistry of a specific neurosecretory cell in the land snail Otala lactea4,5 suggested such a form of long term hormonal regulation, and in fact several vertebrate neurohypophysial peptides cause long term changes in the membrane properties of this cell6. The regulatory effects observed involve the induction or potentiation of bursting pacemaker potential (BPP) activity, resulting in net excitation of the cell. These effects are different from the conventional transient conductance changes produced by various putative transmitters on these cells. We have now found a naturally occurring substance present in the snail brain that produces similar long term changes in the membrane properties of this neurosecretory cell. The results provide evidence for a peptide neurohormone which may function physiologically in the seasonal regulation of the physiology and biochemistry of a neurosecretory cell.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Bloom, F. E., Neurosci. Res. Progr. Bull., 10, 121 (1972).

  2. 2

    Florey, E., Fedn Proc., 26, 1164 (1967).

  3. 3

    Scharrer, B., Prog. Brain Res., 38, 7 (1972).

  4. 4

    Gainer, H., Brain Res., 39, 369 (1972).

  5. 5

    Gainer, H., Brain Res., 39, 387 (1972).

  6. 6

    Barker, J. L., and Gainer, H., Science, 184, 1371 (1974).

  7. 7

    Gerschenfeld, H. M., Physiol. Rev., 53, 1 (1973).

  8. 8

    Krnjevic, K., Physiol. Rev., 54, 418 (1974).

Download references

Author information


  1. Behavioral Biology Branch, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, 20014



  1. Search for MARK S. IFSHIN in:

  2. Search for HAROLD GAINER in:

  3. Search for JEFFERY L. BARKER in:

About this article

Publication history



Issue Date



Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.