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      The effects of dermorphin on the endocrine system in man

      , , , , ,

      Peptides

      Elsevier BV

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          The endocrinology of the opiates and opioid peptides.

          Since the isolation of the enkephalins five yr ago, there has been an explosive increase in knowledge concerning the effects of the opiates and opioid peptides. This review deals with the interactions of opiates with the endocrine system in rat and man. The opioid peptides have been demonstrated to exert a variety of effects on pituitary hormone secretion in rat and man. In the rat, opiates stimulate growth hormone, prolactin and ACTH release and inhibit the release of the glycoprotein hormones. In man, the physiologic role of the endogenous opiates appears to be involved predominantly in ACTH and gonadotrophin regulation. Opiate effects are mainly exerted at the level of the hypothalamus but further modulating effects may occur at the pituitary and at end-organs. Opiate-induced hormonal effects appear to be mediated through dopaminergic and/or serotonergic mechanisms. Recent studies have also suggested a possible local neuromodulatory role for the opioid peptides in the control of carbohydrate metabolism and reproductive processes.
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            Hormonal and metabolic responses to an enkephalin analogue in normal man.

            An enkephalin analogue [D-Ala2, MePhe4, Met(o)-ol] enkephalin (DAMME), given intravenously to normal subjects raised serum prolactin and growth-hormone levels but lowered serum levels of luteinising hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, cortisol, and corticotrophin. There was also a small fall in total glucagon and gastric inhibitory peptide (G.I.P.) and a rise in thyrotrophin. beta-Lipotrophin, motilin, vasoactive intestinal peptide, insulin, gastrin, and pancreatic glucagon were unchanged. Blood-glycerol increased, and blood lactate, alanine, and glucose fell. Prior administration of the opiate antagonist, naloxone, attenuated the hormonal responses to DAMME. This enkephalin analogue produces endocrine and metabolic changes in man which may be mediated through opiate-binding receptors both within and outside the brain. The enkephalins and related substances may provide an important link between perception, behaviour, and neuroendocrine regulation of hormone secretion and metabolism.
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              beta-endorphin suppresses adrenocorticotropin and cortisol levels in normal human subjects.

              To determine the effect of beta-endorphin on the pituitary-adrenal axis, human synthetic beta-endorphin was infused iv in 10 normal human subjects. Either beta-endorphin (0.3, 1.0, and 3.0 micrograms/kg . min, each dose for 30 min) or a control (sham) infusion of 5% dextrose water was administered in a blind fashion in the same subjects on 2 successive days. Plasma ACTH and cortisol and serum human GH and PRL levels were measured 30 min before and then every 30 min for 210 min during and after both the beta-endorphin and control infusions. In all subjects, cortisol levels decreased below the basal level in response to the infusion of beta-endorphin. The threshold dose was 1.0 micrograms/kg . min, with the mean control cortisol level (12 +/- 2 micrograms/dl) declining significantly to 7 +/- 1 micrograms/dl (1.0 micrograms/kg . min) and 6 +/- 1 micrograms/dl (3.0 micrograms/kg . min; P less than 0.01). ACTH levels also were significantly lower than the control value (48 +/- 6 pg/ml) at the 1.0 microgram/kg . min dose (32 +/- 4 pg/ml; P less than 0.05). The decline in ACTH and cortisol levels was also significantly different from levels obtained during the control infusions (P = 0.001 and P = 0.01, respectively). The results are consistent with short feedback loop inhibition of pituitary ACTH release or suppression of hypothalamic corticotropin-releasing factor release by beta-endorphin.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Peptides
                Peptides
                Elsevier BV
                01969781
                January 1985
                January 1985
                : 6
                :
                : 171-175
                Article
                10.1016/0196-9781(85)90370-5
                © 1985

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