Possible Roles of Prostaglandins in the Nervous System

  • Leonhard S. Wolfe


Few would question that one of the most exciting and important developments in biochemistry and physiology in recent years has been the emergence of prostaglandins as a new class of molecules mediating and modulating hormonal, neurohormonal, or other stimuli on most mammalian tissues. In just over ten years the literature on prostaglandins has expanded to over 5000 references, from basic chemistry, metabolism, and pharmacology to clinical trials of natural prostaglandins and synthetic analogues. Although the subject is recent, one can look back at the work of others over the 30 years before the announcement of the structures of the six primary prostaglandins by Bergström and coworkers (Bergström et al., 1962, 1963; review, 1968) and identify principles with biological activities that we now know are mainly due to prostaglandins. Foremost among these were the independent observations of Kurzrok and Lieb (), Goldblatt (1933, 1935), and von Euler (1934, 1935a) that human semen and extracts of sheep vesicular glands contained factors that stimulated intestinal and uterine muscle and lowered arteral blood prossure. Von Euler (1935b) showed that these activities were due to acidic lidic lipids and proposed the name “prostaglandin”.


Precursor Fatty Acid Vesicular Gland Frog Spinal Cord Sheep Vesicular Gland Type Prostaglandin 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leonhard S. Wolfe
    • 1
  1. 1.Donner Laboratory of Experimental Neurochemistry, Montreal Neurological InstituteMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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