Neuropeptide Y chronically injected into the hypothalamus: a powerful neurochemical inducer of hyperphagia and obesity

Peptides. Nov-Dec 1986;7(6):1189-92. doi: 10.1016/0196-9781(86)90149-x.


Neuropeptide Y (NPY), a putative neurotransmitter abundant in the brain, has recently been shown to act within the hypothalamus, inducing a powerful eating response and a specific appetite for carbohydrates. In the present study, NPY (235 pmol) injected bilaterally in the paraventricular nucleus three times a day for 10 days caused approximately a two-fold increase in daily food intake, a six-fold increase in the rate of body weight gain and a three-fold increase in the body fat of female rats. Subsequently, the food intake and body weight of these subjects decreased precipitously, reaching control levels 20 days postinjection. These findings, demonstrating that exogenous NPY is capable of overriding mechanisms of satiety and body weight control, suggest that disturbances in NPY function may play a role in some disorders of eating behavior and body weight regulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / drug effects
  • Adipose Tissue / physiology
  • Animals
  • Appetite / drug effects
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Energy Intake
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Female
  • Hyperphagia / chemically induced*
  • Hypothalamus / drug effects
  • Hypothalamus / physiology*
  • Neuropeptide Y / pharmacology*
  • Obesity / etiology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains


  • Neuropeptide Y