The hormone melatonin, a transducer of environmental photic information, participates in the synchronization of several physiological and behavioral phenomena as a cronobiotic agent. The expression of its receptors MT1 and MT2 have already been demonstrated in structures, which this molecule participates in mechanisms involved in brain functions, immune response and metabolism both in endogenous or pharmacological doses. Although melatonin performs some of its actions independently of receptors, the description of the MT1 and MT2 distribution pattern has contributed to understand many functions of this molecule and the possible therapeutic effects of melatonin and its analogues in different conditions. There are well known beneficial effects of melatonin and its analogues as antioxidant, anti-depressive, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective molecule in several pathologies, including those that work with motor dysfunctions such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's and traumatic brain injury. Despite the strong evidence of melatonin's action in brain structures involved in motor control, the expression of its receptors in areas such as the inferior olivary complex, essential in the process of motor learning, was not investigated. The purpose of this study is to investigate the day/night expression of MT1 and MT2 melatonin receptors in the inferior olivary complex of the primate Sapajus apella by immunohistochemistry.
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