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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Neuronal and nonneuronal taurine-like immunoreactivity in the sea pansy, Renilla koellikeri (Cnidaria, Anthozoa).

A quantitative evaluation of putative amino acid neurotransmitters in sea pansy polyps by high-performance liquid chromatography indicates that the taurine content exceeds that of other amino acids by a 100-fold. The cellular source of this taurine was investigated by immunohistochemistry with two polyclonal antisera raised in rabbit, one against a glutaraldehyde-polylysine-taurine conjugate and the other against a succinylated ovalbumin-carbodiimide-taurine conjugate. Taurine-immunoreactive neurons were localized in a perioral subectodermal nerve net and in the zooid nerve net of the endodermal retractor muscle of the polyp mesenteries. Double labeling experiments revealed that taurine immunostaining does not colocalize with Phe-Mat-Ang-Phe -NH2 FMRFamide immunoreactivity. In addition, strong taurine immunoreactivity was found in nematocytes and other ectodermal cells, in myoepithelial cell bodies of the endoderm, and in calcareous spicule-producing cells of the colonial tissue mass. The limited distribution of neuronal taurine immunostaining to nerve nets associated with muscle systems subtending autozooid polyp retraction supports a role for taurine as a neuromuscular transmitter for this protective reflex. In contrast, the widespread distribution of taurine immunoreactivity in nematocytes and in other nonneuronal cells points to additional cellular functions of taurine, one of which may be to mediate responses to osmotic or metabolic stress.[1]


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