Abstract

Phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (Pnmt) is the enzyme in the catecholamine pathway responsible for converting norepinephrine to epinephrine. Pnmt is present in numerous areas; however, the scope of its expression in the mouse brain is not fully understood. A genetic mouse model was generated by the Ebert lab that exhibited the selective destruction of all Pnmt+ cells through the induction of apoptosis by Diphtheria Toxin A. Unexpected phenotypic defects arose that are characterized by metabolic weight deficits and motor ataxia. The distribution of Pnmt+ neurons was examined throughout the hypothalamus and cerebellum to generate an anatomical map of current and historical Pnmt expression using various histochemical methods. Historical Pnmt expression appears more extensive than current expression levels at the adult stage, indicating that certain cells in the mouse brain may have experienced transient Pnmt expression. The presence of Pnmt in these regions suggests that the destruction of these neurons may play a role in the phenotypic defects observed in the ablation mouse model. Gaining a more comprehensive understanding of the potential role of Pnmt in these areas may elucidate new drug targets or novel methods to treat obesity and motor control disorders such as ataxia.

Thesis Completion

2018

Semester

Fall

Thesis Chair

Ebert, Steven

Degree

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

College

College of Medicine

Department

Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences

Degree Program

Biomedical Sciences

Location

Orlando (Main) Campus

Language

English

Access Status

Campus Access

Length of Campus-only Access

5 years

Release Date

6-1-2024

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