Table of Contents
Physiology Journal
Volume 2013, Article ID 185767, 7 pages
Research Article

Altered Responses to Cold Environment in Urocortin 1 and Corticotropin-Releasing Factor Deficient Mice

1Endocrine Division, Department of Medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA
2Department of Medicine, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar

Received 10 December 2012; Revised 10 April 2013; Accepted 23 April 2013

Academic Editor: Sulayman D. Dib-Hajj

Copyright © 2013 Bayan Chaker et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We examined core body temperature (CBT) of urocortin 1 (UCN1) and corticotropin releasing factor (CRF) knockout (KO) mice exposed to 4°C for 2 h. UCN1KO mice showed higher average CBT during cold exposure as compared to WT. The CBT of male and female WT mice dropped significantly to and  C at 4°C, respectively. In contrast, the CBT of male and female UCN1KO mice dropped only slightly after 2 h at 4°C to and  C, respectively. WT female and male UCN1KO mice showed significant acclimatization to cold; however, female UCN1KO mice did not show such a significant acclimatization. CRFKO mice showed a dramatic decline in CBT from at 22°C to at 4°C for 2 h. The CRF/UCN1 double KO (dKO) mice dropped their CBT to after 2 h exposure to 4°C. Dexamethasone treatment prevented the decline in CBT of the CRFKO and the dKO mice. Taken together, the data suggest a novel role for UCN1 in thermoregulation. The role of CRF is likely secondary to adrenal glucocorticoids, which have an important regulatory role on carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism.