The gene encoding a novel mouse somatostatin receptor termed mSSTR3 was isolated and characterized. The sequence of mSSTR3 shows 46 and 47% identity with mSSTR1 and mSSTR2, respectively. mSSTR3 binds somatostatin-14 and somatostatin-28 with high affinity, but shows very low affinity for the somatostatin analogs MK-678 and SMS-201-995. In addition, mSSTR3 is coupled to pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins and mediates somatostatin inhibition of forskolin-stimulated and dopamine D1 receptor-stimulated cAMP formation, indicating that it is coupled to adenylylcyclase. The pharmacological properties of mSSTR3 and its ability to couple with adenylylcyclase distinguish SSTR3 from the other cloned somatostatin receptors and indicates that it mediates biological functions different from SSTR1 or SSTR2. In situ hybridization indicates that SSTR3 mRNA is widely distributed in the mouse brain, and its expression in the nucleus of the lateral olfactory tract and in the piriform cortex, the primary olfactory cortex in the rodent brain, suggests that SSTR3 may participate in the processing and modulation of primary sensory information.