Measures of pulsatile GH secretion require frequent collection and analysis of blood samples at regular intervals. Due to blood volume constraints, repeat measures of circulating levels of GH in mice remain challenging. Consequently, few observations exist in which the pulsatile pattern of GH secretion in mice have been characterized. To address this, we developed a technique for the collection and analysis of circulating levels of GH at regular and frequent intervals in freely moving mice. This was achieved through the development of a sensitive assay for the detection of GH in small (2 μl) quantities of whole blood. The specificity and accuracy of this assay was validated following guidelines established for single-laboratory validation as specified by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. We incorporated an established method for tail-clip blood sample collection to determine circulating levels of GH secretion in 36 whole blood samples collected consecutively over a period of 6 h. Resulting measures were characterized by peak secretion periods and interpulse stable baseline secretion periods. Periods characterized by elevated whole blood GH levels consisted of multicomponent peaks. Deconvolution analysis of resulting measures confirmed key parameters associated with pulsatile GH secretion. We show a striking decrease in pulsatile GH secretion in mice after 12-18 h of fasting. This model is necessary to characterize the pulsatile profile of GH secretion in mice and will significantly contribute to current attempts to clarify mechanisms that contribute to the regulation of GH secretion.
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