Serotonergic mediation of constant light-potentiated nonphotic phase shifting of the circadian locomotor activity rhythm in Syrian hamsters

Megan E. Knoch, Dustin Siegel, Marilyn J. Duncan, J. David Glass

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14 Scopus citations


Short-term (1-3 days) constant light exposure (brief LL) potentiates nonphotic phase shifting induced by sleep deprivation and serotonin (5-HT) agonist stimulation. The present assessments reveal that exposure to brief LL markedly alters the magnitude and shape of the 5-HT1A,7 receptor agonist, 8-(+)2-dipropyl-amino-8-hydroxyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahyronapthalene (8-OH-DPAT) phase-response curve, facilitating (∼12 h) phase-advance shifts during the early morning when serotonergics have no phase-shifting effect. Brief LL also reduces the threshold for 8-OH-DPAT shifting at midday, evidenced by 5- to 6-h phase-advance shifts elicited by dosages that have no effect without the LL treatment. The brief LL-potentiated phase advances to intraperitoneal 8-OH-DPAT at zeitgeber time 0 (ZT 0) were blocked by the 5-HT1A antagonists, pindolol and WAY 100635, indicating that this shifting is mediated by 5-HT1A receptors. Antagonists with action at 5-HT7 receptors, including ritanserin and metergoline, were without effect. Although autoradiographic analyses of [3H]8-OH-DPAT binding indicate that brief LL does not upregulate suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) 5-HT1A receptor binding, intra-SCN microinjection of 8-OH-DPAT at ZT 0 in brief LL-exposed hamsters induced shifts similar to those produced by intraperitoneal injection, suggesting that SCN 5-HT1A receptors mediate potentiated 8-OH-DPAT-induced shifts during the early morning. Lack of shifting by intra-SCN 8-OH-DPAT at ZT 6 or 18 (when intraperitoneal 8-OH-DPAT induces large shifts), further indicates that brief LL-potentiated shifts at these time points are mediated by 5-HT target(s) outside the SCN. Significantly, sleep deprivation-induced phase-advance shifts potentiated by brief LL (∼9 h) at ZT 0 were blocked by pindolol, suggesting that these behavioral shifts could be mediated by the same SCN 5-HT1A receptor phase-resetting pathway as that activated by 8-OH-DPAT treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R180-R188
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2006


  • 8-OH-DPAT
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Suprachiasmatic nucleus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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