The effect of beta-endorphin on natural cytotoxicity and antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity

Life Sci. 1984 Jul 16;35(3):261-5. doi: 10.1016/0024-3205(84)90109-7.


The ability of the central nervous system to modulate immune responsiveness has received increasing attention. A potential mechanism that would allow the central nervous system to alter the immune system is the release of neuroendocrine and neurotransmitter polypeptides into the peripheral circulation with subsequent modulation of immunocyte function. In this report, we demonstrate that the neuropeptide, beta-[D-ALA2]-endorphin augments natural cytotoxicity but does not effect antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity. The observations are discussed in relation to the mechanisms for natural cytotoxicity and antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antibody-Dependent Cell Cytotoxicity*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytotoxicity Tests, Immunologic
  • Endorphins / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology*
  • beta-Endorphin


  • Endorphins
  • beta-Endorphin