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Keywords:

  • Endorphin;
  • Serotonin;
  • White blood cells;
  • Mast cells;
  • Hormonal imprinting

Abstract

Using flow cytometry and confocal microscopy, the presence of endorphin, serotonin and chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) was demonstrated in rat white blood cells and peritoneal mast cells. After a single neonatal treatment with β-endorphin (hormonal imprinting), the mast cells of female rats reaching adulthood contained significantly less endorphin and serotonin, as well as slightly less hCG, than control cells. There was no change in the hormone content of the mast cells of males. The lymphocytes, monocytes and granulocytes of both sexes also contained the three hormones, but endorphin imprinting had no effect on these cells.