We have used [3H]Ro5-4864, a ligand selective for peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptors, to identify and localize peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptors in endocrine organs. Autoradiographic studies reveal an uniform distribution of [3H]Ro5-4864 binding sites within the anterior, intermediate, and posterior lobes of the pituitary gland, with highest concentrations present in the posterior pituitary. In rat adrenal gland, specific binding sites for [3H]Ro5-4864 are found only in the adrenal cortex, with highest density in the zona glomerulosa and significantly lower concentrations in the zona fasciculata and zona reticularis. [3H]Ro5-4864-associated silver grains in the testis are intensely localized over the interstitial tissue; low concentrations of silver grains are present over the epithelium of the seminiferous tubules but are absent from the tubular lumen. These studies demonstrate a differential and discrete localization of peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptors in rat pituitary, adrenal, and testis.
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