Identification of jellyfish neuropeptides that act directly as oocyte maturation-inducing hormones

Noriyo Takeda, Yota Kon, Gonzalo Quiroga Artigas, Pascal Lapébie, Carine Barreau, Osamu Koizumi, Takeo Kishimoto, Kazunori Tachibana, Evelyn Houliston, Ryusaku Deguchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Oocyte meiotic maturation is crucial for sexually reproducing animals, and its core cytoplasmic regulators are highly conserved between species. By contrast, the few known maturation-inducing hormones (MIHs) that act on oocytes to initiate this process are highly variable in their molecular nature. Using the hydrozoan jellyfish species Clytia and Cladonema, which undergo oocyte maturation in response to dark-light and light-dark transitions, respectively, we deduced amidated tetrapeptide sequences from gonad transcriptome data and found that synthetic peptides could induce maturation of isolated oocytes at nanomolar concentrations. Antibody preabsorption experiments conclusively demonstrated that these W/RPRPamide-related neuropeptides account for endogenous MIH activity produced by isolated gonads. We show that the MIH peptides are synthesised by neural-type cells in the gonad, are released following dark-light/ light-dark transitions, and probably act on the oocyte surface. They are produced by male as well as female jellyfish and can trigger both sperm and egg release, suggesting a role in spawning coordination. We propose an evolutionary link between hydrozoan MIHs and the neuropeptide hormones that regulate reproduction upstream of MIHs in bilaterian species.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberdev156786
JournalDevelopment (Cambridge)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 15


  • Cnidaria
  • Hydrozoan
  • Meiosis
  • Neuropeptide
  • Oocyte maturation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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