The melanocortin agonist, melanotan II, enhances proceptive sexual behaviors in the female rat

The melanocortin agonist, melanotan II, enhances proceptive sexual behaviors in the female rat Melanocortins have been reported to play a role in the control of both male and female sexual behavior. The present study examined the effects of melanotan-II (MT-II), a cyclic peptide analogue of alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone on appetitive and consummatory aspects of female sexual behavior, including aspects of sexual proceptivity (solicitations, hops and darts, ear wiggling, pacing) and receptivity (lordosis). One group of ovariectomized Long-Evans rats ( n = 7) was primed subcutaneously with estradiol benzoate (EB) and progesterone (P) (10 μg and 500 μg respectively) and another group ( n = 7) with EB (10 μg) and oil (EB alone). Paced mating tests were performed with sexually experienced males in unilevel chambers, which were bisected by a Plexiglas divider containing three holes, through which only the female could pass. MT-II (1 and 3 mg/kg) or saline was injected intravenously 10 min before each 30-min paced mating test. Each female received the 3 treatments. In females primed with EB + P both doses of MT-II increased the number of hops and darts and ear wiggling significantly, but did not alter pacing or lordosis. With EB alone, no effect of MT-II was observed on any of the parameters measured. These results suggest that P can interact with MT-II to increase proceptive behaviors. Because hops and darts are essentially solicitations, made in close proximity to the male, that indicate a desire on the part of females to receive mounts and intromissions, these data suggest that activation of melanocortin receptors may represent a promising mode of action for the treatment of women with hypoactive sexual desire. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior Elsevier

The melanocortin agonist, melanotan II, enhances proceptive sexual behaviors in the female rat

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 Elsevier Inc.
ISSN
0091-3057
eISSN
1873-5177
D.O.I.
10.1016/j.pbb.2006.09.023
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Melanocortins have been reported to play a role in the control of both male and female sexual behavior. The present study examined the effects of melanotan-II (MT-II), a cyclic peptide analogue of alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone on appetitive and consummatory aspects of female sexual behavior, including aspects of sexual proceptivity (solicitations, hops and darts, ear wiggling, pacing) and receptivity (lordosis). One group of ovariectomized Long-Evans rats ( n = 7) was primed subcutaneously with estradiol benzoate (EB) and progesterone (P) (10 μg and 500 μg respectively) and another group ( n = 7) with EB (10 μg) and oil (EB alone). Paced mating tests were performed with sexually experienced males in unilevel chambers, which were bisected by a Plexiglas divider containing three holes, through which only the female could pass. MT-II (1 and 3 mg/kg) or saline was injected intravenously 10 min before each 30-min paced mating test. Each female received the 3 treatments. In females primed with EB + P both doses of MT-II increased the number of hops and darts and ear wiggling significantly, but did not alter pacing or lordosis. With EB alone, no effect of MT-II was observed on any of the parameters measured. These results suggest that P can interact with MT-II to increase proceptive behaviors. Because hops and darts are essentially solicitations, made in close proximity to the male, that indicate a desire on the part of females to receive mounts and intromissions, these data suggest that activation of melanocortin receptors may represent a promising mode of action for the treatment of women with hypoactive sexual desire.

Journal

Pharmacology Biochemistry and BehaviorElsevier

Published: Nov 1, 2006

References

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  • Autoradiographic discrimination of melanocortin receptors indicates that the MC3 subtype dominates in the medial rat brain
    Lindblom, J.; Schioth, H.B.; Larsson, A.; Wikberg, J.E.; Bergstrom, L.
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    Pfaus, J.G.; Kippin, T.E.; Centeno, S.
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