Relaxin family peptides: structure-activity relationship studies

Br J Pharmacol. 2017 May;174(10):950-961. doi: 10.1111/bph.13684. Epub 2017 Jan 19.


The human relaxin peptide family consists of seven cystine-rich peptides, four of which are known to signal through relaxin family peptide receptors, RXFP1-4. As these peptides play a vital role physiologically and in various diseases, they are of considerable importance for drug discovery and development. Detailed structure-activity relationship (SAR) studies towards understanding the role of important residues in each of these peptides have been reported over the years and utilized for the design of antagonists and minimized agonist variants. This review summarizes the current knowledge of the SAR of human relaxin 2 (H2 relaxin), human relaxin 3 (H3 relaxin), human insulin-like peptide 3 (INSL3) and human insulin-like peptide 5 (INSL5).

Linked articles: This article is part of a themed section on Recent Progress in the Understanding of Relaxin Family Peptides and their Receptors. To view the other articles in this section visit

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Insulin / chemistry*
  • Models, Molecular
  • Proteins / chemistry*
  • Relaxin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Relaxin / chemistry
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


  • Insulin
  • Leydig insulin-like protein
  • Proteins
  • RLN2 protein, human
  • RLN3 protein, human
  • Relaxin