Neuropeptides: Peptides released by NEURONS as intercellular messengers. Many neuropeptides are also hormones released by non-neuronal cells.Substance P: An eleven-amino acid neurotransmitter that appears in both the central and peripheral nervous systems. It is involved in transmission of PAIN, causes rapid contractions of the gastrointestinal smooth muscle, and modulates inflammatory and immune responses.FMRFamide: A molluscan neuroactive peptide which induces a fast excitatory depolarizing response due to direct activation of amiloride-sensitive SODIUM CHANNELS. (From Nature 1995; 378(6558): 730-3)Neuropeptide Y: A 36-amino acid peptide present in many organs and in many sympathetic noradrenergic neurons. It has vasoconstrictor and natriuretic activity and regulates local blood flow, glandular secretion, and smooth muscle activity. The peptide also stimulates feeding and drinking behavior and influences secretion of pituitary hormones.Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide: Calcitonin gene-related peptide. A 37-amino acid peptide derived from the calcitonin gene. It occurs as a result of alternative processing of mRNA from the calcitonin gene. The neuropeptide is widely distributed in neural tissue of the brain, gut, perivascular nerves, and other tissue. The peptide produces multiple biological effects and has both circulatory and neurotransmitter modes of action. In particular, it is a potent endogenous vasodilator.Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide: A highly basic, 28 amino acid neuropeptide released from intestinal mucosa. It has a wide range of biological actions affecting the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and respiratory systems and is neuroprotective. It binds special receptors (RECEPTORS, VASOACTIVE INTESTINAL PEPTIDE).Receptors, Neuropeptide: Cell surface receptors that bind specific neuropeptides with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes influencing the behavior of cells. Many neuropeptides are also hormones outside of the nervous system.Invertebrate Hormones: Hormones produced by invertebrates, usually insects, mollusks, annelids, and helminths.Galanin: A neuropeptide of 29-30 amino acids depending on the species. Galanin is widely distributed throughout the BRAIN; SPINAL CORD; and INTESTINES. There are various subtypes of GALANIN RECEPTORS implicating roles of galanin in regulating FOOD INTAKE; pain perception; memory; and other neuroendocrine functions.Tachykinins: A family of biologically active peptides sharing a common conserved C-terminal sequence, -Phe-X-Gly-Leu-Met-NH2, where X is either an aromatic or a branched aliphatic amino acid. Members of this family have been found in mammals, amphibians, and mollusks. Tachykinins have diverse pharmacological actions in the central nervous system and the cardiovascular, genitourinary, respiratory, and gastrointestinal systems, as well as in glandular tissues. This diversity of activity is due to the existence of three or more subtypes of tachykinin receptors.Brachyura: An infraorder of chiefly marine, largely carnivorous CRUSTACEA, in the order DECAPODA, including the genera Cancer, Uca, and Callinectes.Hypothalamus: Ventral part of the DIENCEPHALON extending from the region of the OPTIC CHIASM to the caudal border of the MAMMILLARY BODIES and forming the inferior and lateral walls of the THIRD VENTRICLE.Neurosecretory Systems: A system of NEURONS that has the specialized function to produce and secrete HORMONES, and that constitutes, in whole or in part, an ENDOCRINE SYSTEM or organ.Neurokinin A: A mammalian neuropeptide of 10 amino acids that belongs to the tachykinin family. It is similar in structure and action to SUBSTANCE P and NEUROKININ B with the ability to excite neurons, dilate blood vessels, and contract smooth muscles, such as those in the BRONCHI.Pituitary Adenylate Cyclase-Activating Polypeptide: A multi-function neuropeptide that acts throughout the body by elevating intracellular cyclic AMP level via its interaction with PACAP RECEPTORS. Although first isolated from hypothalamic extracts and named for its action on the pituitary, it is widely distributed in the central and peripheral nervous systems. PACAP is important in the control of endocrine and homeostatic processes, such as secretion of pituitary and gut hormones and food intake.Enkephalin, Methionine: One of the endogenous pentapeptides with morphine-like activity. It differs from LEU-ENKEPHALIN by the amino acid METHIONINE in position 5. Its first four amino acid sequence is identical to the tetrapeptide sequence at the N-terminal of BETA-ENDORPHIN.Capsaicin: An alkylamide found in CAPSICUM that acts at TRPV CATION CHANNELS.Dynorphins: A class of opioid peptides including dynorphin A, dynorphin B, and smaller fragments of these peptides. Dynorphins prefer kappa-opioid receptors (RECEPTORS, OPIOID, KAPPA) and have been shown to play a role as central nervous system transmitters.Pyrrolidonecarboxylic Acid: A cyclized derivative of L-GLUTAMIC ACID. Elevated blood levels may be associated with problems of GLUTAMINE or GLUTATHIONE metabolism.Agouti-Related Protein: A secreted protein of approximately 131 amino acids that is related to AGOUTI SIGNALING PROTEIN and is also an antagonist of MELANOCORTIN RECEPTOR activity. It is expressed primarily in the HYPOTHALAMUS and the ADRENAL GLAND. As a paracrine signaling molecule, AGRP is known to regulate food intake and body weight. Elevated AGRP has been associated with OBESITY.Neurotransmitter Agents: Substances used for their pharmacological actions on any aspect of neurotransmitter systems. Neurotransmitter agents include agonists, antagonists, degradation inhibitors, uptake inhibitors, depleters, precursors, and modulators of receptor function.Somatostatin: A 14-amino acid peptide named for its ability to inhibit pituitary GROWTH HORMONE release, also called somatotropin release-inhibiting factor. It is expressed in the central and peripheral nervous systems, the gut, and other organs. SRIF can also inhibit the release of THYROID-STIMULATING HORMONE; PROLACTIN; INSULIN; and GLUCAGON besides acting as a neurotransmitter and neuromodulator. In a number of species including humans, there is an additional form of somatostatin, SRIF-28 with a 14-amino acid extension at the N-terminal.Neurokinin B: A mammalian neuropeptide of 10 amino acids that belongs to the tachykinin family. It is similar in structure and action to SUBSTANCE P and NEUROKININ A with the ability to excite neurons, dilate blood vessels, and contract smooth muscles, such as those in the URINARY BLADDER and UTERUS.Gastrin-Releasing Peptide: Neuropeptide and gut hormone that helps regulate GASTRIC ACID secretion and motor function. Once released from nerves in the antrum of the STOMACH, the neuropeptide stimulates release of GASTRIN from the GASTRIN-SECRETING CELLS.Molting: Periodic casting off FEATHERS; HAIR; or cuticle. Molting is a process of sloughing or desquamation, especially the shedding of an outer covering and the development of a new one. This phenomenon permits growth in ARTHROPODS, skin renewal in AMPHIBIANS and REPTILES, and the shedding of winter coats in BIRDS and MAMMALS.Protein PrecursorsPeptide PHI: A 27-amino acid peptide with histidine at the N-terminal and isoleucine amide at the C-terminal. The exact amino acid composition of the peptide is species dependent. The peptide is secreted in the intestine, but is found in the nervous system, many organs, and in the majority of peripheral tissues. It has a wide range of biological actions, affecting the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, respiratory, and central nervous systems.Neurotensin: A biologically active tridecapeptide isolated from the hypothalamus. It has been shown to induce hypotension in the rat, to stimulate contraction of guinea pig ileum and rat uterus, and to cause relaxation of rat duodenum. There is also evidence that it acts as both a peripheral and a central nervous system neurotransmitter.Neurogenic Inflammation: Inflammation caused by an injurious stimulus of peripheral neurons and resulting in release of neuropeptides which affect vascular permeability and help initiate proinflammatory and immune reactions at the site of injury.Aplysia: An opisthobranch mollusk of the order Anaspidea. It is used frequently in studies of nervous system development because of its large identifiable neurons. Aplysiatoxin and its derivatives are not biosynthesized by Aplysia, but acquired by ingestion of Lyngbya (seaweed) species.Secretogranin II: A type of chromogranin which was initially characterized in the ANTERIOR PITUITARY GLAND. It is found in several species including human, rat, mouse, and others. Secretogranin II is an acidic protein of 559 to 586 amino acid residues that can stimulate DOPAMINE release from neurons and release of pituitary GONADOTROPINS.Pro-Opiomelanocortin: A 30-kDa protein synthesized primarily in the ANTERIOR PITUITARY GLAND and the HYPOTHALAMUS. It is also found in the skin and other peripheral tissues. Depending on species and tissues, POMC is cleaved by PROHORMONE CONVERTASES yielding various active peptides including ACTH; BETA-LIPOTROPIN; ENDORPHINS; MELANOCYTE-STIMULATING HORMONES; and others (GAMMA-LPH; CORTICOTROPIN-LIKE INTERMEDIATE LOBE PEPTIDE; N-terminal peptide of POMC or NPP).Neuroimmunomodulation: The biochemical and electrophysiological interactions between the NERVOUS SYSTEM and IMMUNE SYSTEM.Enkephalins: One of the three major families of endogenous opioid peptides. The enkephalins are pentapeptides that are widespread in the central and peripheral nervous systems and in the adrenal medulla.Hypothalamic Hormones: Peptide hormones produced by NEURONS of various regions in the HYPOTHALAMUS. They are released into the pituitary portal circulation to stimulate or inhibit PITUITARY GLAND functions. VASOPRESSIN and OXYTOCIN, though produced in the hypothalamus, are not included here for they are transported down the AXONS to the POSTERIOR LOBE OF PITUITARY before being released into the portal circulation.Orexin Receptors: G-protein-coupled NEUROPEPTIDE RECEPTORS that have specificity for OREXINS and play a role in appetite control, and sleep-wake cycles. Two principle receptor types exist, each having a specificity for OREXIN A and OREXIN B peptide subtypes.Vasotocin: A nonapeptide that contains the ring of OXYTOCIN and the side chain of ARG-VASOPRESSIN with the latter determining the specific recognition of hormone receptors. Vasotocin is the non-mammalian vasopressin-like hormone or antidiuretic hormone regulating water and salt metabolism.Receptors, Neurokinin-1: A class of cell surface receptors for TACHYKININS with a preference for SUBSTANCE P. Neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptors have been cloned and are members of the G protein coupled receptor superfamily. They are found on many cell types including central and peripheral neurons, smooth muscle cells, acinar cells, endothelial cells, fibroblasts, and immune cells.Neurons: The basic cellular units of nervous tissue. Each neuron consists of a body, an axon, and dendrites. Their purpose is to receive, conduct, and transmit impulses in the NERVOUS SYSTEM.Bombesin: A tetradecapeptide originally obtained from the skins of toads Bombina bombina and B. variegata. It is also an endogenous neurotransmitter in many animals including mammals. Bombesin affects vascular and other smooth muscle, gastric secretion, and renal circulation and function.Arthropod Proteins: Proteins synthesized by organisms belonging to the phylum ARTHROPODA. Included in this heading are proteins from the subdivisions ARACHNIDA; CRUSTACEA; and HORSESHOE CRABS. Note that a separate heading for INSECT PROTEINS is listed under this heading.Receptors, Tachykinin: Cell surface proteins that bind TACHYKININS with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes influencing the behavior of cells. Three classes of tachykinin receptors have been characterized, the NK-1; NK-2; and NK-3; which prefer, respectively, SUBSTANCE P; NEUROKININ A; and NEUROKININ B.Endorphins: One of the three major groups of endogenous opioid peptides. They are large peptides derived from the PRO-OPIOMELANOCORTIN precursor. The known members of this group are alpha-, beta-, and gamma-endorphin. The term endorphin is also sometimes used to refer to all opioid peptides, but the narrower sense is used here; OPIOID PEPTIDES is used for the broader group.Oxytocin: A nonapeptide hormone released from the neurohypophysis (PITUITARY GLAND, POSTERIOR). It differs from VASOPRESSIN by two amino acids at residues 3 and 8. Oxytocin acts on SMOOTH MUSCLE CELLS, such as causing UTERINE CONTRACTIONS and MILK EJECTION.Insect Hormones: Hormones secreted by insects. They influence their growth and development. Also synthetic substances that act like insect hormones.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone: A peptide of about 41 amino acids that stimulates the release of ADRENOCORTICOTROPIC HORMONE. CRH is synthesized by neurons in the PARAVENTRICULAR NUCLEUS of the HYPOTHALAMUS. After being released into the pituitary portal circulation, CRH stimulates the release of ACTH from the PITUITARY GLAND. CRH can also be synthesized in other tissues, such as PLACENTA; ADRENAL MEDULLA; and TESTIS.Cholecystokinin: A peptide, of about 33 amino acids, secreted by the upper INTESTINAL MUCOSA and also found in the central nervous system. It causes gallbladder contraction, release of pancreatic exocrine (or digestive) enzymes, and affects other gastrointestinal functions. Cholecystokinin may be the mediator of satiety.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Receptors, Neuropeptide Y: Cell surface proteins that bind neuropeptide Y with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells.Ganglia: Clusters of multipolar neurons surrounded by a capsule of loosely organized CONNECTIVE TISSUE located outside the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.Pituitary Hormones: Hormones secreted by the PITUITARY GLAND including those from the anterior lobe (adenohypophysis), the posterior lobe (neurohypophysis), and the ill-defined intermediate lobe. Structurally, they include small peptides, proteins, and glycoproteins. They are under the regulation of neural signals (NEUROTRANSMITTERS) or neuroendocrine signals (HYPOTHALAMIC HORMONES) from the hypothalamus as well as feedback from their targets such as ADRENAL CORTEX HORMONES; ANDROGENS; ESTROGENS.Proprotein Convertase 2: A serine endopeptidase that has specificity for cleavage at ARGININE. It cleaves a variety of prohormones including PRO-OPIOMELANOCORTIN, proluteinizing-hormone-releasing hormone, proenkephalins, prodynorphin, and PROINSULIN.Enkephalin, Leucine: One of the endogenous pentapeptides with morphine-like activity. It differs from MET-ENKEPHALIN in the LEUCINE at position 5. Its first four amino acid sequence is identical to the tetrapeptide sequence at the N-terminal of BETA-ENDORPHIN.Lymnaea: A genus of dextrally coiled freshwater snails that includes some species of importance as intermediate hosts of parasitic flukes.Neurons, Afferent: Neurons which conduct NERVE IMPULSES to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.Arcuate Nucleus: A nucleus located in the middle hypothalamus in the most ventral part of the third ventricle near the entrance of the infundibular recess. Its small cells are in close contact with the ependyma.Vasopressins: Antidiuretic hormones released by the NEUROHYPOPHYSIS of all vertebrates (structure varies with species) to regulate water balance and OSMOLARITY. In general, vasopressin is a nonapeptide consisting of a six-amino-acid ring with a cysteine 1 to cysteine 6 disulfide bridge or an octapeptide containing a CYSTINE. All mammals have arginine vasopressin except the pig with a lysine at position 8. Vasopressin, a vasoconstrictor, acts on the KIDNEY COLLECTING DUCTS to increase water reabsorption, increase blood volume and blood pressure.Neprilysin: Enzyme that is a major constituent of kidney brush-border membranes and is also present to a lesser degree in the brain and other tissues. It preferentially catalyzes cleavage at the amino group of hydrophobic residues of the B-chain of insulin as well as opioid peptides and other biologically active peptides. The enzyme is inhibited primarily by EDTA, phosphoramidon, and thiorphan and is reactivated by zinc. Neprilysin is identical to common acute lymphoblastic leukemia antigen (CALLA Antigen), an important marker in the diagnosis of human acute lymphocytic leukemia. There is no relationship with CALLA PLANT.Carboxypeptidase H: A ZINC-containing exopeptidase primarily found in SECRETORY VESICLES of endocrine and neuroendocrine cells. It catalyzes the cleavage of C-terminal ARGININE or LYSINE residues from polypeptides and is active in processing precursors of PEPTIDE HORMONES and other bioactive peptides.Secretory Vesicles: Vesicles derived from the GOLGI APPARATUS containing material to be released at the cell surface.Oligopeptides: Peptides composed of between two and twelve amino acids.Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization: A mass spectrometric technique that is used for the analysis of large biomolecules. Analyte molecules are embedded in an excess matrix of small organic molecules that show a high resonant absorption at the laser wavelength used. The matrix absorbs the laser energy, thus inducing a soft disintegration of the sample-matrix mixture into free (gas phase) matrix and analyte molecules and molecular ions. In general, only molecular ions of the analyte molecules are produced, and almost no fragmentation occurs. This makes the method well suited for molecular weight determinations and mixture analysis.Neuroendocrine Cells: Specialized NEURONS that produce hormones, such as NEUROPEPTIDES or BIOGENIC AMINES. They generally are in the NERVOUS SYSTEM, such as HYPOTHALAMUS, but can be found in other organs or systems. These neurons contain dense neurosecretory granules and PROPROTEIN CONVERTASES allowing the rapidly release of NEUROHORMONES into the blood circulation upon stimulation.Amidine-Lyases: These enzymes catalyze the elimination of ammonia from amidines with the formation of a double bond. EC 4.3.2.Receptors, Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide, Type I: A pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide receptor subtype that binds both PACAP and VASOACTIVE INTESTINAL PEPTIDE. It is found predominately in the BRAIN.Receptors, Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide: Cell surface proteins that bind VASOACTIVE INTESTINAL PEPTIDE; (VIP); with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells.Urocortins: Neuropeptides of about 40 amino acids which are structurally similar to CORTICOTROPIN-RELEASING FACTOR. Unlike CRF acting primarily through type 1 CRF RECEPTORS, urocortins signal preferentially through type 2 CRF receptors. Urocortins have wide tissue distribution from fish to mammals, and diverse functions. In mammals, urocortins can suppress food intake, delays gastric emptying, and decreases heat-induced edema.beta-Endorphin: A 31-amino acid peptide that is the C-terminal fragment of BETA-LIPOTROPIN. It acts on OPIOID RECEPTORS and is an analgesic. Its first four amino acids at the N-terminal are identical to the tetrapeptide sequence of METHIONINE ENKEPHALIN and LEUCINE ENKEPHALIN.Receptors, Neurokinin-2: A class of cell surface receptors for tachykinins that prefers neurokinin A; (NKA, substance K, neurokinin alpha, neuromedin L), neuropeptide K; (NPK); or neuropeptide gamma over other tachykinins. Neurokinin-2 (NK-2) receptors have been cloned and are similar to other G-protein coupled receptors.Ganglia, Invertebrate: Clusters of neuronal cell bodies in invertebrates. Invertebrate ganglia may also contain neuronal processes and non-neuronal supporting cells. Many invertebrate ganglia are favorable subjects for research because they have small numbers of functional neuronal types which can be identified from one animal to another.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled: The largest family of cell surface receptors involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION. They share a common structure and signal through HETEROTRIMERIC G-PROTEINS.Autonomic Pathways: Nerves and plexuses of the autonomic nervous system. The central nervous system structures which regulate the autonomic nervous system are not included.Receptors, Catecholamine: Cell surface proteins that bind catecholamines with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells. The catecholamine messengers epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine are synthesized from tyrosine by a common biosynthetic pathway.Neurokinin-1 Receptor Antagonists: Compounds that inhibit or block the activity of NEUROKININ-1 RECEPTORS.Peptides: Members of the class of compounds composed of AMINO ACIDS joined together by peptide bonds between adjacent amino acids into linear, branched or cyclical structures. OLIGOPEPTIDES are composed of approximately 2-12 amino acids. Polypeptides are composed of approximately 13 or more amino acids. PROTEINS are linear polypeptides that are normally synthesized on RIBOSOMES.alpha-MSH: A 13-amino acid peptide derived from proteolytic cleavage of ADRENOCORTICOTROPIC HORMONE, the N-terminal segment of ACTH. ACTH (1-13) is amidated at the C-terminal to form ACTH (1-13)NH2 which in turn is acetylated to form alpha-MSH in the secretory granules. Alpha-MSH stimulates the synthesis and distribution of MELANIN in MELANOCYTES in mammals and MELANOPHORES in lower vertebrates.Opioid Peptides: The endogenous peptides with opiate-like activity. The three major classes currently recognized are the ENKEPHALINS, the DYNORPHINS, and the ENDORPHINS. Each of these families derives from different precursors, proenkephalin, prodynorphin, and PRO-OPIOMELANOCORTIN, respectively. There are also at least three classes of OPIOID RECEPTORS, but the peptide families do not map to the receptors in a simple way.Feeding Behavior: Behavioral responses or sequences associated with eating including modes of feeding, rhythmic patterns of eating, and time intervals.Receptors, Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide, Type II: A pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating peptide receptor subtype found in LYMPHOCYTES. It binds both PACAP and VASOACTIVE INTESTINAL PEPTIDE and regulates immune responses.Ascaris suum: A species of parasitic nematode usually found in domestic pigs and a few other animals. Human infection can also occur, presumably as result of handling pig manure, and can lead to intestinal obstruction.Cockroaches: Insects of the order Dictyoptera comprising several families including Blaberidae, BLATTELLIDAE, Blattidae (containing the American cockroach PERIPLANETA americana), Cryptocercidae, and Polyphagidae.Eating: The consumption of edible substances.Nerve Tissue ProteinsNerve Fibers: Slender processes of NEURONS, including the AXONS and their glial envelopes (MYELIN SHEATH). Nerve fibers conduct nerve impulses to and from the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.Appetite Regulation: Physiologic mechanisms which regulate or control the appetite and food intake.Rats, Sprague-Dawley: A strain of albino rat used widely for experimental purposes because of its calmness and ease of handling. It was developed by the Sprague-Dawley Animal Company.Proprotein Convertase 1: A CALCIUM-dependent endopeptidase that has specificity for cleavage at ARGININE that is near paired basic residues. It cleaves a variety of prohormones including PRO-OPIOMELANOCORTIN; PRORENIN; proenkephalins; prodynorphin; prosomatostatin; and PROINSULIN.Brain: The part of CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM that is contained within the skull (CRANIUM). Arising from the NEURAL TUBE, the embryonic brain is comprised of three major parts including PROSENCEPHALON (the forebrain); MESENCEPHALON (the midbrain); and RHOMBENCEPHALON (the hindbrain). The developed brain consists of CEREBRUM; CEREBELLUM; and other structures in the BRAIN STEM.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid: Liquid chromatographic techniques which feature high inlet pressures, high sensitivity, and high speed.Peptide Hormones: Hormones synthesized from amino acids. They are distinguished from INTERCELLULAR SIGNALING PEPTIDES AND PROTEINS in that their actions are systemic.Hemolymph: The blood/lymphlike nutrient fluid of some invertebrates.Hypothalamic Area, Lateral: Area in the hypothalamus bounded medially by the mammillothalamic tract and the anterior column of the FORNIX (BRAIN). The medial edge of the INTERNAL CAPSULE and the subthalamic region form its lateral boundary. It contains the lateral hypothalamic nucleus, tuberomammillary nucleus, lateral tuberal nuclei, and fibers of the MEDIAL FOREBRAIN BUNDLE.Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormones: Peptides with the ability to stimulate pigmented cells MELANOCYTES in mammals and MELANOPHORES in lower vertebrates. By stimulating the synthesis and distribution of MELANIN in these pigmented cells, they increase coloration of skin and other tissue. MSHs, derived from pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), are produced by MELANOTROPHS in the INTERMEDIATE LOBE OF PITUITARY; CORTICOTROPHS in the ANTERIOR LOBE OF PITUITARY, and the hypothalamic neurons in the ARCUATE NUCLEUS OF HYPOTHALAMUS.Tachyphylaxis: Rapidly decreasing response to a drug or physiologically active agent after administration of a few doses. In immunology, it is the rapid immunization against the effect of toxic doses of an extract or serum by previous injection of small doses. (Dorland, 28th ed)Kisspeptins: Intercellular signaling peptides that were originally characterized by their ability to suppress NEOPLASM METASTASIS. Kisspeptins have since been found to play an important role in the neuroendocrine regulation of REPRODUCTION.Hydra: A genus of freshwater polyps in the family Hydridae, order Hydroida, class HYDROZOA. They are of special interest because of their complex organization and because their adult organization corresponds roughly to the gastrula of higher animals.Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins: Proteins and peptides that are involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION within the cell. Included here are peptides and proteins that regulate the activity of TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS and cellular processes in response to signals from CELL SURFACE RECEPTORS. Intracellular signaling peptide and proteins may be part of an enzymatic signaling cascade or act through binding to and modifying the action of other signaling factors.Brain Chemistry: Changes in the amounts of various chemicals (neurotransmitters, receptors, enzymes, and other metabolites) specific to the area of the central nervous system contained within the head. These are monitored over time, during sensory stimulation, or under different disease states.Receptors, Pituitary Adenylate Cyclase-Activating Polypeptide, Type INeurophysins: Carrier proteins for OXYTOCIN and VASOPRESSIN. They are polypeptides of about 10-kDa, synthesized in the HYPOTHALAMUS. Neurophysin I is associated with oxytocin and neurophysin II is associated with vasopressin in their respective precursors and during transportation down the axons to the neurohypophysis (PITUITARY GLAND, POSTERIOR).Nervous System: The entire nerve apparatus, composed of a central part, the brain and spinal cord, and a peripheral part, the cranial and spinal nerves, autonomic ganglia, and plexuses. (Stedman, 26th ed)Gastrointestinal Hormones: HORMONES secreted by the gastrointestinal mucosa that affect the timing or the quality of secretion of digestive enzymes, and regulate the motor activity of the digestive system organs.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Arginine Vasopressin: The predominant form of mammalian antidiuretic hormone. It is a nonapeptide containing an ARGININE at residue 8 and two disulfide-linked cysteines at residues of 1 and 6. Arg-vasopressin is used to treat DIABETES INSIPIDUS or to improve vasomotor tone and BLOOD PRESSURE.Peptide Fragments: Partial proteins formed by partial hydrolysis of complete proteins or generated through PROTEIN ENGINEERING techniques.Radioimmunoassay: Classic quantitative assay for detection of antigen-antibody reactions using a radioactively labeled substance (radioligand) either directly or indirectly to measure the binding of the unlabeled substance to a specific antibody or other receptor system. Non-immunogenic substances (e.g., haptens) can be measured if coupled to larger carrier proteins (e.g., bovine gamma-globulin or human serum albumin) capable of inducing antibody formation.Mass Spectrometry: An analytical method used in determining the identity of a chemical based on its mass using mass analyzers/mass spectrometers.Ubiquitin Thiolesterase: A thioester hydrolase which acts on esters formed between thiols such as DITHIOTHREITOL or GLUTATHIONE and the C-terminal glycine residue of UBIQUITIN.Isoindoles: Benzopyrroles with the nitrogen at the number two carbon, in contrast to INDOLES which have the nitrogen adjacent to the six-membered ring.Bradykinin: A nonapeptide messenger that is enzymatically produced from KALLIDIN in the blood where it is a potent but short-lived agent of arteriolar dilation and increased capillary permeability. Bradykinin is also released from MAST CELLS during asthma attacks, from gut walls as a gastrointestinal vasodilator, from damaged tissues as a pain signal, and may be a neurotransmitter.Receptors, Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone: Cell surface proteins that bind corticotropin-releasing hormone with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells. The corticotropin releasing-hormone receptors on anterior pituitary cells mediate the stimulation of corticotropin release by hypothalamic corticotropin releasing factor. The physiological consequence of activating corticotropin-releasing hormone receptors on central neurons is not well understood.Rats, Wistar: A strain of albino rat developed at the Wistar Institute that has spread widely at other institutions. This has markedly diluted the original strain.In Situ Hybridization: A technique that localizes specific nucleic acid sequences within intact chromosomes, eukaryotic cells, or bacterial cells through the use of specific nucleic acid-labeled probes.Receptors, Pituitary Hormone: Cell surface proteins that bind pituitary hormones with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes influencing the behavior of cells. Since many pituitary hormones are also released by neurons as neurotransmitters, these receptors are also found in the nervous system.Hydrozoa: A class in the phylum CNIDARIA which alternates between polyp and medusa forms during their life cycle. There are over 2700 species in five orders.Receptors, Pituitary Adenylate Cyclase-Activating Polypeptide: A family of G-protein-coupled receptors that share significant homology with GLUCAGON RECEPTORS. They bind PITUITARY ADENYLATE CYCLASE ACTIVATING POLYPEPTIDE with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes that influence the behavior of CELLS.Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System: A collection of NEURONS, tracts of NERVE FIBERS, endocrine tissue, and blood vessels in the HYPOTHALAMUS and the PITUITARY GLAND. This hypothalamo-hypophyseal portal circulation provides the mechanism for hypothalamic neuroendocrine (HYPOTHALAMIC HORMONES) regulation of pituitary function and the release of various PITUITARY HORMONES into the systemic circulation to maintain HOMEOSTASIS.Injections, Intraventricular: Injections into the cerebral ventricles.Larva: Wormlike or grublike stage, following the egg in the life cycle of insects, worms, and other metamorphosing animals.Hormones: Chemical substances having a specific regulatory effect on the activity of a certain organ or organs. The term was originally applied to substances secreted by various ENDOCRINE GLANDS and transported in the bloodstream to the target organs. It is sometimes extended to include those substances that are not produced by the endocrine glands but that have similar effects.Leptin: A 16-kDa peptide hormone secreted from WHITE ADIPOCYTES. Leptin serves as a feedback signal from fat cells to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM in regulation of food intake, energy balance, and fat storage.Melanins: Insoluble polymers of TYROSINE derivatives found in and causing darkness in skin (SKIN PIGMENTATION), hair, and feathers providing protection against SUNBURN induced by SUNLIGHT. CAROTENES contribute yellow and red coloration.Ecdysteroids: Steroids that bring about MOLTING or ecdysis in insects. Ecdysteroids include the endogenous insect hormones (ECDYSONE and ECDYSTERONE) and the insect-molting hormones found in plants, the phytoecdysteroids. Phytoecdysteroids are natural insecticides.Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Appetite Stimulants: Agents that are used to stimulate appetite. These drugs are frequently used to treat anorexia associated with cancer and AIDS.Receptors, Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide: Cell surface proteins that bind CALCITONIN GENE-RELATED PEPTIDE with high affinity and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells. CGRP receptors are present in both the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM and the periphery. They are formed via the heterodimerization of the CALCITONIN RECEPTOR-LIKE PROTEIN and RECEPTOR ACTIVITY-MODIFYING PROTEIN 1.Nervous System Physiological Phenomena: Characteristic properties and processes of the NERVOUS SYSTEM as a whole or with reference to the peripheral or the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.Hyperphagia: Ingestion of a greater than optimal quantity of food.Central Nervous System: The main information-processing organs of the nervous system, consisting of the brain, spinal cord, and meninges.Chromogranins: A group of acidic proteins that are major components of SECRETORY GRANULES in the endocrine and neuroendocrine cells. They play important roles in the aggregation, packaging, sorting, and processing of secretory protein prior to secretion. They are cleaved to release biologically active peptides. There are various types of granins, usually classified by their sources.Neurosecretion: The production and release of substances such as NEUROTRANSMITTERS or HORMONES from nerve cells.Starfish: Echinoderms having bodies of usually five radially disposed arms coalescing at the center.Octopamine: An alpha-adrenergic sympathomimetic amine, biosynthesized from tyramine in the CNS and platelets and also in invertebrate nervous systems. It is used to treat hypotension and as a cardiotonic. The natural D(-) form is more potent than the L(+) form in producing cardiovascular adrenergic responses. It is also a neurotransmitter in some invertebrates.Thyrotropin-Releasing Hormone: A tripeptide that stimulates the release of THYROTROPIN and PROLACTIN. It is synthesized by the neurons in the PARAVENTRICULAR NUCLEUS of the HYPOTHALAMUS. After being released into the pituitary portal circulation, TRH (was called TRF) stimulates the release of TSH and PRL from the ANTERIOR PITUITARY GLAND.Malpighian Tubules: Slender tubular or hairlike excretory structures found in insects. They emerge from the alimentary canal between the mesenteron (midgut) and the proctodeum (hindgut).Grasshoppers: Plant-eating orthopterans having hindlegs adapted for jumping. There are two main families: Acrididae and Romaleidae. Some of the more common genera are: Melanoplus, the most common grasshopper; Conocephalus, the eastern meadow grasshopper; and Pterophylla, the true katydid.Nerve Endings: Branch-like terminations of NERVE FIBERS, sensory or motor NEURONS. Endings of sensory neurons are the beginnings of afferent pathway to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. Endings of motor neurons are the terminals of axons at the muscle cells. Nerve endings which release neurotransmitters are called PRESYNAPTIC TERMINALS.Dose-Response Relationship, Drug: The relationship between the dose of an administered drug and the response of the organism to the drug.Receptors, Neurotransmitter: Cell surface receptors that bind signalling molecules released by neurons and convert these signals into intracellular changes influencing the behavior of cells. Neurotransmitter is used here in its most general sense, including not only messengers that act to regulate ion channels, but also those which act on second messenger systems and those which may act at a distance from their release sites. Included are receptors for neuromodulators, neuroregulators, neuromediators, and neurohumors, whether or not located at synapses.Pituitary Gland, Posterior: Neural tissue of the pituitary gland, also known as the neurohypophysis. It consists of the distal AXONS of neurons that produce VASOPRESSIN and OXYTOCIN in the SUPRAOPTIC NUCLEUS and the PARAVENTRICULAR NUCLEUS. These axons travel down through the MEDIAN EMINENCE, the hypothalamic infundibulum of the PITUITARY STALK, to the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland.Locomotion: Movement or the ability to move from one place or another. It can refer to humans, vertebrate or invertebrate animals, and microorganisms.Chromogranin B: A type of chromogranin which was initially characterized in a rat PHEOCHROMOCYTOMA CELL LINE. It is found in many species including human, rat, mouse, and others. It is an acidic protein with 626 to 657 amino acid residues. In some species, it inhibits secretion of PARATHYROID HORMONE or INSULIN and exerts bacteriolytic effects in others.Narcolepsy: A condition characterized by recurrent episodes of daytime somnolence and lapses in consciousness (microsomnias) that may be associated with automatic behaviors and AMNESIA. CATAPLEXY; SLEEP PARALYSIS, and hypnagogic HALLUCINATIONS frequently accompany narcolepsy. The pathophysiology of this disorder includes sleep-onset rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which normally follows stage III or IV sleep. (From Neurology 1998 Feb;50(2 Suppl 1):S2-S7)Secretin: A peptide hormone of about 27 amino acids from the duodenal mucosa that activates pancreatic secretion and lowers the blood sugar level. (USAN and the USP Dictionary of Drug Names, 1994, p597)Receptors, Neurokinin-3: A class of cell surface receptors for tachykinins that prefers neurokinin B (neurokinin beta, neuromedin K) over other tachykinins. Neurokinin-3 (NK-3) receptors have been cloned and are members of the G-protein coupled receptor superfamily. They have been found in the central nervous system and in peripheral tissues.Ghrelin: A 28-amino acid, acylated, orexigenic peptide that is a ligand for GROWTH HORMONE SECRETAGOGUE RECEPTORS. Ghrelin is widely expressed but primarily in the stomach in the adults. Ghrelin acts centrally to stimulate growth hormone secretion and food intake, and peripherally to regulate energy homeostasis. Its large precursor protein, known as appetite-regulating hormone or motilin-related peptide, contains ghrelin and obestatin.Guinea Pigs: A common name used for the genus Cavia. The most common species is Cavia porcellus which is the domesticated guinea pig used for pets and biomedical research.Gene Expression Regulation: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control (induction or repression) of gene action at the level of transcription or translation.Nerve Tissue: Differentiated tissue of the central nervous system composed of NERVE CELLS, fibers, DENDRITES, and specialized supporting cells.Tracheal DiseasesSkin: The outer covering of the body that protects it from the environment. It is composed of the DERMIS and the EPIDERMIS.Pituitary Gland: A small, unpaired gland situated in the SELLA TURCICA. It is connected to the HYPOTHALAMUS by a short stalk which is called the INFUNDIBULUM.Receptors, Opioid: Cell membrane proteins that bind opioids and trigger intracellular changes which influence the behavior of cells. The endogenous ligands for opioid receptors in mammals include three families of peptides, the enkephalins, endorphins, and dynorphins. The receptor classes include mu, delta, and kappa receptors. Sigma receptors bind several psychoactive substances, including certain opioids, but their endogenous ligands are not known.Subtilisins: A family of SERINE ENDOPEPTIDASES isolated from Bacillus subtilis. EC 3.4.21.-QuinuclidinesSuprachiasmatic Nucleus: An ovoid densely packed collection of small cells of the anterior hypothalamus lying close to the midline in a shallow impression of the OPTIC CHIASM.Miotics: Agents causing contraction of the pupil of the eye. Some sources use the term miotics only for the parasympathomimetics but any drug used to induce miosis is included here.Sensory Receptor Cells: Specialized afferent neurons capable of transducing sensory stimuli into NERVE IMPULSES to be transmitted to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. Sometimes sensory receptors for external stimuli are called exteroceptors; for internal stimuli are called interoceptors and proprioceptors.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.Midline Thalamic Nuclei: Small, nonspecific nerve cells scattered in the periventricular GRAY MATTER, separating the medial part of the thalamus from the EPENDYMA of the THIRD VENTRICLE. The group includes the paraventricular nucleus, paratenial nucleus, reuniens nucleus, rhomboidal nucleus, and subfascular nucleus.Proprotein Convertases: Proteolytic enzymes that are involved in the conversion of protein precursors such as peptide prohormones into PEPTIDE HORMONES. Some are ENDOPEPTIDASES, some are EXOPEPTIDASES.Mice, Inbred C57BLNephropidae: Family of large marine CRUSTACEA, in the order DECAPODA. These are called clawed lobsters because they bear pincers on the first three pairs of legs. The American lobster and Cape lobster in the genus Homarus are commonly used for food.Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone: A decapeptide that stimulates the synthesis and secretion of both pituitary gonadotropins, LUTEINIZING HORMONE and FOLLICLE STIMULATING HORMONE. GnRH is produced by neurons in the septum PREOPTIC AREA of the HYPOTHALAMUS and released into the pituitary portal blood, leading to stimulation of GONADOTROPHS in the ANTERIOR PITUITARY GLAND.Microdialysis: A technique for measuring extracellular concentrations of substances in tissues, usually in vivo, by means of a small probe equipped with a semipermeable membrane. Substances may also be introduced into the extracellular space through the membrane.Secretory Pathway: A series of sequential intracellular steps involved in the transport of proteins (such as hormones and enzymes) from the site of synthesis to outside the cell. The pathway involves membrane-bound compartments through which the newly synthesized proteins undergo POST-TRANSLATIONAL MODIFICATIONS, packaging, storage, or transportation to the PLASMA MEMBRANE for secretion.Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins: Proteins from the nematode species CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS. The proteins from this species are the subject of scientific interest in the area of multicellular organism MORPHOGENESIS.Serotonin: A biochemical messenger and regulator, synthesized from the essential amino acid L-TRYPTOPHAN. In humans it is found primarily in the central nervous system, gastrointestinal tract, and blood platelets. Serotonin mediates several important physiological functions including neurotransmission, gastrointestinal motility, hemostasis, and cardiovascular integrity. Multiple receptor families (RECEPTORS, SEROTONIN) explain the broad physiological actions and distribution of this biochemical mediator.Insect Proteins: Proteins found in any species of insect.Crustacea: A large subphylum of mostly marine ARTHROPODS containing over 42,000 species. They include familiar arthropods such as lobsters (NEPHROPIDAE), crabs (BRACHYURA), shrimp (PENAEIDAE), and barnacles (THORACICA).Receptors, Leptin: Cell surface receptors for obesity factor (LEPTIN), a hormone secreted by the WHITE ADIPOCYTES. Upon leptin-receptor interaction, the signal is mediated through the JAK2/STAT3 pathway to regulate food intake, energy balance and fat storage.Nerve Growth Factor: NERVE GROWTH FACTOR is the first of a series of neurotrophic factors that were found to influence the growth and differentiation of sympathetic and sensory neurons. It is comprised of alpha, beta, and gamma subunits. The beta subunit is responsible for its growth stimulating activity.Pancreatic Polypeptide: A 36-amino acid pancreatic hormone that is secreted mainly by endocrine cells found at the periphery of the ISLETS OF LANGERHANS and adjacent to cells containing SOMATOSTATIN and GLUCAGON. Pancreatic polypeptide (PP), when administered peripherally, can suppress gastric secretion, gastric emptying, pancreatic enzyme secretion, and appetite. A lack of pancreatic polypeptide (PP) has been associated with OBESITY in rats and mice.Caenorhabditis elegans: A species of nematode that is widely used in biological, biochemical, and genetic studies.Gene Expression: The phenotypic manifestation of a gene or genes by the processes of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION and GENETIC TRANSLATION.Protease Inhibitors: Compounds which inhibit or antagonize biosynthesis or actions of proteases (ENDOPEPTIDASES).Metalloendopeptidases: ENDOPEPTIDASES which use a metal such as ZINC in the catalytic mechanism.Mixed Function Oxygenases: Widely distributed enzymes that carry out oxidation-reduction reactions in which one atom of the oxygen molecule is incorporated into the organic substrate; the other oxygen atom is reduced and combined with hydrogen ions to form water. They are also known as monooxygenases or hydroxylases. These reactions require two substrates as reductants for each of the two oxygen atoms. There are different classes of monooxygenases depending on the type of hydrogen-providing cosubstrate (COENZYMES) required in the mixed-function oxidation.Infusions, Intraventricular: The delivery of a drug into a fluid-filled cavity of the brain.