Appetite-Suppressing Effects of Urocortin, a CRF-Related Neuropeptide

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Science  13 Sep 1996:
Vol. 273, Issue 5281, pp. 1561-1564
DOI: 10.1126/science.273.5281.1561


The neuropeptide corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) is well known to act on the central nervous system in ways that mimic stress and result in decreases in exploration, increases in sympathetic activity, decreases in parasympathetic outflow, and decreases in appetitive behavior. Urocortin, a neuropeptide related to CRF, binds with high affinity to the CRF2 receptor, is more potent than CRF in suppressing appetite, but is less potent than CRF in producing anxiety-like effects and activation. Doses as low as 10 nanograms injected intracerebroventricularly were effective in decreasing food intake in food-deprived and free-feeding rats. These results suggest that urocortin may be an endogenous CRF-like factor in the brain responsible for the effects of stress on appetite.

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