Lindane may enhance nocturnal pineal N-acetyltransferase activity via β-adrenergic receptors

A. M. Attia, B. A. Richardson, C. Rodriguez, M. H. Mostafa, S. A. Soliman, A. H. El-Sebae, R. J. Reiter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Lindane, a chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticide, was previously shown to enhance the nighttime rise in pineal N-acetyltransferase (NAT) activity and melatonin as well as serum melatonin levels. The purpose of the present study was to test whether lindane acts on the pineal gland by means of a β-adrenergic receptor mechanism. Whereas lindane (total dose 17.8 mg/kg b.wt. over 6 days) by itself significantly augmented the nocturnal levels of pineal NAT activity in otherwise untreated rats, the pesticide was ineffective in reference to this enzyme when it was given in conjunction with the β-adrenergic receptor antagonist propranolol (20 mg/kg b.wt., one hour before lights off). The augmentation of NAT activity by lindane also caused significant reductions in pineal serotonin (5-HT) and 5-hydroxyindole acetic acid (5-HIAA); again, both these responses were blocked by propranolol treatment. Neither pineal 5-hydroxytryptophan nor pineal or serum melatonin levels were significantly changed as a result of either lindane or propranolol treatment. The results are consistent with the idea that lindane influences pineal 5-HT metabolism either at the level of the β-adrenergic receptor or via the sympathetic innervation to the pineal gland.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)253-256
Number of pages4
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jul 19 1991


  • 5-Hydroxyindole acetic acid
  • Lindane
  • N-Acetyltransferase
  • Pineal gland
  • Propranolol
  • Serotonin
  • β-Adrenergic receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Molecular Biology
  • General Neuroscience
  • Developmental Biology


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