Arginine-vasopressin (AVP) is a homeostatic modulator of body temperature during fever and may also be involved in normal body temperature control. In the present study the hypothalamus of mice bi-directionally selected for thermoregulatory nest-building behavior was immunocytochemically labeled for AVE The low-selected mice had a 1.5-fold higher number of AVP-immunoreactive neurons in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) compared to the unselected control and the high-selected mice. No differences between the selected lines could be detected in the number of AVP-immunoreactive neurons in the paraventricular nuclei (PVN). The neuroanatomical data suggest a possible role of AVP in the SCN and control of thermoregulatory nest-building behavior. Our selected mice may prove to be a model system to study the role of AVP in the SCN.
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