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J Urol. 2010 Jul;184(1):386-91. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2010.03.002. Epub 2010 May 20.

Melatonin increases bladder capacity via GABAergic system and decreases urine volume in rats.

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Department of Urology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Fukui, Fukui, Japan.



Impaired melatonin production is involved in disruption of the normal circadian pattern of sleep, which leads to nocturia in older adults. Melatonin improves nocturia. We hypothesized that melatonin could alleviate urinary frequency by suppressing the brain micturition center. We investigated the central contribution of melatonin to bladder function and urine volume.


Cystometry was done in conscious female Sprague-Dawley rats (Japan SLC, Hamamatsu, Japan). We examined the effect of melatonin alone (4.3 x 10(-1) to 4.3 x 10 pmol intracerebroventricularly) or with the gamma-aminobutyric acid(A) antagonist bicuculline (5.0 x 10(-5) mg/kg intravenously) on bladder function. The influence of melatonin (4.3 x 10 pmol intracerebroventricularly) on urine volume was investigated in water loaded rats. Blood samples were collected to determine antidiuretic hormone, atrial natriuretic peptide and brain natriuretic peptide 4 hours after melatonin administration.


Melatonin significantly increased bladder capacity dose dependently by 27.0%, 40.8% and 63.5% at 4.3 x 10(-1), 4.3 and 4.3 x 10 pmol, respectively, but had no significant effect on bladder contraction pressure. Bicuculline inhibited the melatonin induced increases in bladder capacity. Melatonin decreased urine volume in water loaded rats but plasma antidiuretic hormone, atrial natriuretic peptide and bladder contraction pressure were not changed.


Results suggest that melatonin increases bladder capacity via gamma-aminobutyric acid(A) receptor in the brain and decreases urine volume. Thus, melatonin could be beneficial for nocturia via a central nervous system effect.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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