Serum prolactin levels after administration of the alimentary opioid peptide gluten exorphin B4 in male rats

Nutr Neurosci. 2004 Feb;7(1):53-5. doi: 10.1080/1028415042000194630.


Gluten Exorphins are opioid peptides identified in enzymatic digests of gluten. The effects of Gluten Exorphins are still largely unknown. It has been shown that Gluten Exorphin B5 (Tyr-Gly-Gly-Trp-Leu) stimulates Prolactin secretion in male rats. In this study, we have evaluated the Prolactin response to Gluten Exorphin B4, another exorphin whose structure (Tyr-Gly-Gly-Trp) is identical to that of the NH(2)-terminal sequence of Gluten Exorphin B5. To this aim, five groups of male rats were given the following intravenous treatments: vehicle, Gluten Exorphin B5 3 mg kg-1 body weight, Gluten Exorphin B4 at the doses of 3, 6 and 9 mg kg-1 body weight. At the dose of 3 mg kg-1 body weight, Gluten Exorphin B5 induced a significant increase in Prolactin levels. Gluten Exorphin B4 could not modify Prolactin secretion, even when administered at doses three times higher than those effective for Gluten Exorphin B5. The present study: (1) indicates that Gluten Exorphin B4 does not modify Prolactin secretion in male rats; (2) confirms the ability of Gluten Exorphin B5 to exert a stimulatory action on Prolactin release; (3) suggests that the presence of the carboxy-terminal leucine in Gluten Exorphin B5 is essential for its action on Prolactin secretion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Glutens / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Oligopeptides / pharmacology*
  • Opioid Peptides / pharmacology*
  • Prolactin / blood*
  • Prolactin / metabolism
  • Rats


  • Oligopeptides
  • Opioid Peptides
  • exorphin B4
  • Glutens
  • Prolactin