Endocrine Signalling Group

Bodle Street, United Kingdom

Endocrine Signalling Group

Bodle Street, United Kingdom
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Packer R.M.A.,Lane College | Volk H.A.,Lane College | Fowkes R.C.,Endocrine Signalling Group
Physiology and Behavior | Year: 2017

There is a complex bidirectional relationship between stress and epilepsy. Stressful stimuli and subsequent cortisol release act as a trigger for seizure activity in some individuals with epilepsy, and seizure activity itself may act as a stressor to the affected individual. Epilepsy is the most common chronic neurological condition in domestic dogs and requires chronic management by their human carers, impacting upon the quality of life of both dog and carer. Seizures occur unpredictably and may be stressful for carers to witness and manage. In the present study we investigated the role of seizure activity as a stressor, measuring the effect of spontaneously occurring seizure activity in dogs with epilepsy upon their own cortisol levels and that of their carers. Furthermore, we tested whether individual differences in HPA reactivity were associated with owner personality characteristics and the quality of the dog–carer relationship. Saliva samples were obtained from sixteen dog-carer dyads in the home setting 20 and 40 0.25 minute post-seizure, and at time-matched points on the following (non-seizure) day. Significant differences in cortisol levels were found in dogs at 40 0.25 minute post-seizure (265.1% increase), and at 20 0.25 minute post-seizure in their carers (40.5% increase). No associations were found between cortisol reactivity and the strength of the dog-carer bond. Carers with higher neuroticism scores exhibited higher cortisol levels at both post-seizure sampling points. As there was a gender bias in the carer sample (15/16 were female), and there are known sex differences in cortisol reactivity in response to psychological stress, the conclusions of this study may be limited to female carers. These findings are the first to objectively demonstrate the acutely stressful effects of seizures in dogs with epilepsy and their carers. © 2017 Elsevier Inc.


Cabrera-Sharp V.,Endocrine Signalling Group | Mirczuk S.M.,Endocrine Signalling Group | Shervill E.,Endocrine Signalling Group | Michael A.E.,St George's, University of London | Fowkes R.C.,Endocrine Signalling Group
Cell and Tissue Research | Year: 2013

In target tissues, cortisol is metabolised by two 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11βHSD) isoenzymes, namely 11βHSD1 and 11βHSD2, both of which are co-expressed in the boar testis and reproductive tract. The present study has assessed whether cortisol-cortisone metabolism in boar testis and caput epididymidis can be regulated via the gonadotrophin-cAMP signalling pathway. 11βHSD activities were measured by using a radiometric conversion assay in static tissue culture. In both testis and caput epididymidis, the net reduction of cortisone but not the net oxidation of cortisol, was significantly decreased by luteinising hormone (by 53 ± 20% and 45 ± 9%, respectively, P < 0.05), forskolin (by 60 ± 7% and 57 ± 9%, respectively, P < 0.01) and 8-bromo-cAMP (by 54 ± 4% and 64 ± 1%, respectively, P < 0.01). This suppression of 11-ketosteroid reductase activity in the boar testis by forskolin could be attenuated by the protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor, H89. Hence, within the boar testis and the caput epididymidis, the local actions of glucocorticoids are modulated by gonadotrophin-cAMP-PKA signalling via their selective effects on the reductase activity of 11βHSD. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Fowkes R.C.,Endocrine Signalling Group | Moradi-Bidhendi N.,Queen Mary, University of London | Branceleone V.,University of Basilicata | Zariwala M.G.,University of Westminster | And 4 more authors.
Psychoneuroendocrinology | Year: 2013

Salivary cortisol is commonly used as a clinical biomarker of endocrine status and also as a marker of psychosocial stress. Annexin-A1 (AnxA1) is an anti-inflammatory protein whose expression is modulated by glucocorticoids. Our principal objectives were to (i) detect the presence of and (ii) measure AnxA1 protein in whole human saliva and to (iii) investigate whether salivary cortisol and AnxA1 are correlated in healthy humans. A total of 37 healthy participants (male and female) were used in the study. Saliva was collected using salivette tubes. Salivary cortisol and AnxA1 protein were sampled at between 3 and 6 time points over 24. h and measured for cortisol and AnxA1 protein using specific ELISA's. The presence of salivary AnxA1 protein was confirmed by Western blotting.AnxA1 protein is detectable in whole human saliva, as detected by Western blot analysis and ELISA. A diurnal rhythm was evident in both salivary cortisol (. P<. 0.01) and AnxA1 (. P<. 0.01) and was defined as a significant difference in time 0 (waking) samples compared to 'bed' (2300. h) samples. AnxA1 protein did not exhibit an awakening response (. P>. 0.05), whereas salivary cortisol was significantly elevated between time 0 and 30. min post waking (. P<. 0.001).AnxA1 protein correlates positively with salivary cortisol, indicating that cortisol is most likely a regulator of AnxA1 in human saliva. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


PubMed | Endocrine Signalling Group
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Psychoneuroendocrinology | Year: 2013

Salivary cortisol is commonly used as a clinical biomarker of endocrine status and also as a marker of psychosocial stress. Annexin-A1 (AnxA1) is an anti-inflammatory protein whose expression is modulated by glucocorticoids. Our principal objectives were to (i) detect the presence of and (ii) measure AnxA1 protein in whole human saliva and to (iii) investigate whether salivary cortisol and AnxA1 are correlated in healthy humans. A total of 37 healthy participants (male and female) were used in the study. Saliva was collected using salivette tubes. Salivary cortisol and AnxA1 protein were sampled at between 3 and 6 time points over 24h and measured for cortisol and AnxA1 protein using specific ELISAs. The presence of salivary AnxA1 protein was confirmed by Western blotting. AnxA1 protein is detectable in whole human saliva, as detected by Western blot analysis and ELISA. A diurnal rhythm was evident in both salivary cortisol (P<0.01) and AnxA1 (P<0.01) and was defined as a significant difference in time 0 (waking) samples compared to bed (2300 h) samples. AnxA1 protein did not exhibit an awakening response (P>0.05), whereas salivary cortisol was significantly elevated between time 0 and 30 min post waking (P<0.001). AnxA1 protein correlates positively with salivary cortisol, indicating that cortisol is most likely a regulator of AnxA1 in human saliva.

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