Involvement of nucleotide diphosphate kinase 2 in the reopening of the sensitive period of filial imprinting of domestic chicks (Gallus gallus domesticus)

Shinji Yamaguchi, Naoya Aoki, Akihiko Takehara, Masaru Mori, Akio Kanai, Toshiya Matsushima, Koichi J. Homma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


Filial imprinting is a behavior characterized by the sensitive or critical period restricted to the first few days after hatching. Once the sensitive period is closed, it is widely believed that chicks can never be imprinted under natural conditions. Previously, we showed that the exogenous injection of T3 reopened the sensitive period which was already closed. That study suggested that T3 functioned by way of a rapid non-genomic action; however, the molecular mechanism of how T3 reopens the sensitive period remains unknown. Here, we show that the phosphorylation level of nucleotide diphosphate kinase 2 (NDPK2) was upregulated following T3 injection. Pharmacological deprivation of the kinase activity of NDPK hampered the molecular process prerequisite for the reopening of the sensitive period of filial imprinting. Moreover, it is shown that the kinase activity of NDPK2 participates in the priming process by T3 signaling which endows the potential for learning. Our data indicate that NDPK2 plays a crucial role downstream of T3 action and that its phosphorylation is involved in the non-genomic signaling during imprinting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-37
Number of pages6
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 26



  • Filial imprinting
  • Learning
  • NDPK2
  • Non-genomic signaling
  • Sensitive period
  • Thyroid hormone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this