Leptin receptor gene expression in the brains of lean (+/+) and obese (ob/ob) C57Bl/6 mice was examined using a non-radioactive in situ hybridization detection method. Significant increases in leptin receptor mRNA expression were found in the ventromedial and arcuate hypothalamic nuclei, piriform and olfactory cortices and medial habenular nucleus. There were very minor changes in the amount of leptin receptor mRNA expression in hippocampus proper (CA1-3). Results indicated that leptin receptor is upregulated when there is a lack of functional leptin, as in hereditary obese (ob/ob) mice. It is also suggested that leptin receptor may be an autoreceptor.