Modulation of feeding by hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus alpha 1- and alpha 2-adrenergic receptors. Academic Article uri icon


  • Noradrenergic receptor populations within the paraventricular hypothalamus (PVN) modulate feeding. Satiated rats exhibit enhanced feeding subsequent to activation of alpha 2-adrenergic receptors within the PVN induced by exogenous infusion of either norepinephrine (NE) or clonidine (CLON). The feeding-stimulatory effect of alpha 2-adrenergic agents presumably reflects an inhibitory action on receptors located on medial hypothalamic "satiety" cells. Adrenergic receptors of the alpha 1-subclass have been identified within the PVN which are excitatory and which may function to suppress food intake. Microinjection into rat PVN of various alpha 1-adrenergic agonists including cirazoline, methoxamine, phenylpropanolamine and phenylephrine suppress feeding; an effect that is reversed by pretreatment with alpha 1-adrenergic receptor antagonists. The present review argues that alpha 1- and alpha 2-adrenoceptors within brain and specifically within the PVN are organized in an antagonistic fashion and that the effects of various adrenergic agonists on feeding may reflect the degree to which these agonists act at alpha 1- and alpha 2-adrenoceptors as well the relative balance of these receptors and their activity within the PVN.

published proceedings

  • Life Sci

author list (cited authors)

  • Wellman, P. J., Davies, B. T., Morien, A., & McMahon, L.

citation count

  • 108

complete list of authors

  • Wellman, PJ||Davies, BT||Morien, A||McMahon, L

publication date

  • January 1993