TSH is the important regulator of thyroid function but detailed molecular mechanisms have not been clarified. We first generated the iodine deficient (ID) rat in which goiter is induced by accelerated endogenous TSH secretion. The result of microarray analysis demonstrated markedly increased levels of adrenomedullin 2/intermedin (AM2/IMD) expression in the ID rat thyroid. AM2/IMD is a potent vasodilator. AM2/IMD mRNA expression was induced by TSH in a rat thyroid follicular cell line FRTL-5. Immunohistochemical analysis in human normal and Graves' disease thyroid revealed that AM2/IMD immunoreactivity was detected in follicular cells and more pronounced in Graves' disease. These results indicated that TSH induced AM2/IMD expression in the rat thyroid gland and it could locally work as a potent vasodilator, resulting in the expansion of thyroid inter-follicular capillaries. AM2/IMD could also contribute to facilitate thyroid hormone synthesis possibly via vasodilation effects and/or cAMP stimulating effects in the human thyroid gland.
ASJC Scopus subject areas