Behavioral actions of urotensin-II

Peptides. 2008 May;29(5):838-44. doi: 10.1016/j.peptides.2007.12.016. Epub 2008 Jan 17.


Urotensin-II (U-II) and urotensin-II-related peptide (URP) have been identified as the endogenous ligands of the orphan G-protein-coupled receptor GPR14 now renamed UT. The occurrence of U-II and URP in the central nervous system, and the widespread distribution of UT in the brain suggest that U-II and URP may play various behavioral activities. Studies conducted in rodents have shown that central administration of U-II stimulates locomotion, provokes anxiety- and depressive-like states, enhances feeding activity and increases the duration of paradoxical sleep episodes. These observations indicate that, besides the endocrine/paracrine activities of U-II and URP on cardiovascular and kidney functions, these peptides may act as neurotransmitters and/or neuromodulators to regulate various neurobiological activities.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anxiety / metabolism
  • Behavior, Animal / physiology*
  • Central Nervous System / anatomy & histology
  • Central Nervous System / metabolism
  • Depression / metabolism
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology
  • Humans
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Peptide Hormones / genetics
  • Peptide Hormones / metabolism
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / genetics
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism
  • Urotensins / genetics
  • Urotensins / metabolism*


  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Peptide Hormones
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • UTS2B protein, human
  • UTS2R protein, human
  • Urotensins
  • urotensin II