The actions of glutamate (L-Glu), and glutamate receptor agonists on serum thyroid hormones (T4 and T3) and TSH levels have been studied in conscious and freely moving adult male rats. The excitatory amino acids (EAA), L-Glu, N-methyl- D-aspartate (NMDA), kainic acid (KA) and domoic acid (Dom) were administered intraperitoneally. Blood samples were collected through a cannula implanted in the rats jugular 0–60 min after injection. Thyroid hormone concentrations were measured by enzyme immunoassay, and thyrotrophin (TSH) concentrations were determined by radioimmunoassay. The results showed that L-Glu (20 and 25 mg/kg) and NMDA (25 mg/kg) increased serum thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3) and TSH concentrations. Serum thyroid hormone levels increased 30 min after treatment, while serum TSH levels increased 5 min after i.p. administration, in both cases serum levels remained elevated during one hour. Injection of the non-NMDA glutamatergic agonists KA (30 mg/kg) and Dom (1 mg/kg) produced an increase in serum thyroid hormones and TSH levels. These results suggest the importance of EAAs in the regulation of hormone secretion from the pituitary-thyroid axis, as well as the importance of the NMDA and non-NMDA receptors in this stimulatory effect.