Nesfatin is an 82 amino acid peptide identified as a novel hypothalamic regulator of feeding. In rodents, central administration of nesfatin acutely inhibits feeding and chronic administration reduces weight gain. Subsequent research has demonstrated nesfatin is involved in the control of puberty in female rats. During puberty i.c.v. administration of nesfatin stimulates release of LH and FSH but has no effect in adult female rats.
We investigated the effects of i.c.v. injection of nesfatin on the release of pituitary hormones in ad libitum fed unanaesthetised adult male rats. In contrast to the data from adult female rats, i.c.v. administration of nesfatin (1 nmol) significantly increased plasma LH and FSH levels 30 min post injection. There were no significant changes in plasma ACTH, TSH and prolactin. In a second experiment, i.c.v. administration of nesfatin (1 nmol) significantly increased plasma testosterone 60 min post injection. To further investigate the role of nesfatin in the hypothalamicpituitarygonadal (HPG) axis we examined the effect of nesfatin on the release of GnRH from static hypothalamic explants. Treatment with 100 and 1000 nM nesfatin significantly increased GnRH release from in vitro hypothalamic explants. Data from these studies suggests nesfatin is a novel regulator of the HPG axis in adult male rats.