Whereas thyrotropin releasing hormone is rapidly and extensively degraded by plasma of adult rats, no appreciable loss of biological or immunological activity is caused by plasma from rats 4 or 16 days old. The plasma of neonatal rats does not appear to contain an inhibitor of thyrotropin releasing hormone peptidase or a peptidase with altered substrate affinity. The development of an active peptidase in rat plasma suggests a physiological role for inactivation of thyrotropin releasing hormone.