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Brain Res. 2006 Nov 13;1119(1):133-49. Epub 2006 Sep 22.

Effect of central administration of QRFP(26) peptide on energy balance and characterization of a second QRFP receptor in rat.

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Department of Psychiatry, Obesity Research Center, University of Cincinnati-Genome Research Institute, Cincinnati, OH, USA.


The recently identified neuropeptide QRFP(26) is predominantly expressed in the hypothalamus and was suggested to play a role in the regulation of food intake following the observation of an acute orexigenic effect after central administration in mice. QRFP(26) exerts its effect via GPR103 and a newly identified receptor in mouse. The aim of our study was (a) to investigate the distribution of QRFP(26) and a newly discovered QRFP receptor mRNA in rat and (b) to further characterize the effects of central administration of QRFP(26) on energy balance in rats. QRFP(26) mRNA was detected in the retrochiasmatic nucleus, periventricular nucleus, arcuate nucleus and restricted areas of the lateral nucleus of the hypothalamus. We found an additional receptor with high homology for GPR103 in rat. This receptor increases inositol triphosphate production in transfected cells in presence of QRFP(26) and its mRNA was particularly enriched in ventral and posterior thalamic groups, anterior hypothalamus and medulla. When QRFP(26) (10 microg and 50 microg) was administered centrally before the start of the light phase both doses increased food intake for 2 h after injection without reaching statistical significance. QRFP(26) caused no changes in locomotor activity or energy expenditure. In summary, central QRFP(26) injection causes slight and transient hyperphagia in rats without changing any other energy balance parameters after 24 h. We conclude that QRFP(26) has limited impact on the central regulation of energy balance in rats and that its essential function remains to be clarified.

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