Immunoassay of 6-hydroxymelatonin sulfate in human plasma and urine: abolition of the urinary 24-hour rhythm with atenolol

J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1985 Jun;60(6):1166-73. doi: 10.1210/jcem-60-6-1166.


An assessment of the rhythmic characteristics of melatonin secretion in man and other species requires the determination of 24-h secretion profiles. Measurement of a major excreted metabolite would allow noninvasive study of pineal function, applicable in particular to pediatric and long term circadian rhythm studies. This report describes a simple and rapid RIA for 6-hydroxymelatonin sulfate in human plasma and urine. Physiological studies revealed that both plasma and urinary levels of 6-hydroxymelatonin sulfate were closely related to plasma melatonin, and that the urinary 24-h rhythm was abolished by the beta 1-adrenergic anagonist atenolol.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies / isolation & purification
  • Atenolol / pharmacology*
  • Chromatography, Paper
  • Circadian Rhythm*
  • Cross Reactions
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoassay
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Melatonin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Melatonin / analysis
  • Melatonin / blood
  • Melatonin / metabolism
  • Melatonin / urine
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains


  • Antibodies
  • Atenolol
  • Melatonin
  • 6-hydroxymelatonin