The effects of oral 5-hydroxytryptophan administration on feeding behavior in obese adult female subjects

J Neural Transm. 1989;76(2):109-17. doi: 10.1007/BF01578751.


Nineteen obese female subjects with body mass index ranging between 30 and 40 were included in a double-blind crossover study aimed at evaluating the effects of oral 5-hydroxytryptophan administration on feeding behavior, mood state and weight loss. Either 5-hydroxytryptophan (8 mg/kg/day) or placebo was administered for five weeks during which patients were not prescribed any dietary restrictions. Feeding behavior was investigated by means of a questionnaire designed to establish the onset of anorexia and related symptoms. Food intake was evaluated using a three-day diet diary. BDI, SI, STAI-T, and STAI-S were used to assess mood state. The administration of 5-hydroxytryptophan resulted in no changes in mood state but promoted typical anorexia-related symptoms, decreased food intake and weight loss during the period of observation.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan / administration & dosage
  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan / pharmacokinetics
  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan / therapeutic use*
  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Feeding Behavior / drug effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydroxyindoleacetic Acid / urine
  • Obesity / drug therapy*


  • Hydroxyindoleacetic Acid
  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan