DADLE: A Cue to Human “Hibernation”

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M. Biggiogera; P. Fabene; C. Zancanaro (2006), JBIS, 59, 115-118

Refcode: 2006.59.115
Keywords: Hibernation, opioids, in vitro, in vivo, cell culture, telemetry

DADLE [D-Ala(2)-D-Leu(5)-enkephalin] can induce hibernation when injected into ground squirrels in summer and is able to increase the survival time of explanted organs such as liver and lung. Since cell metabolism is a target of the peptide, we have treated HeLa cells with DADLE and investigated its possible effect on transcription and proliferation and the resumption of metabolic activity after the treatment. Results show that DADLE is able to reduce the nucleoplasmic transport of RNA, thereby suggesting that the opioid acts a depressor of cell function in vitro. In in vivo experiments, rats acutely injected with DADLE showed reduction of body temperature and locomotion up to 90 min. This suggest that the opioid is able to depress metabolic activities at the organism level. The potential of DADLE as a hibernation induction factor in mammals which are not natural hibernators (inclusive of the human) deserves careful scrutiny.

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