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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1996 Dec;81(12):4338-41.

Hexarelin-induced growth hormone, cortisol, and prolactin release: a dose-response study.

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London Center for Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism, Middlesex Hospital, London, United Kingdom.


Dose-response data for GH-releasing peptides are limited. We studied the effects of varying doses (0-1.0 microgram/kg) of hexarelin, a novel GH-releasing peptide, administered iv to healthy adult males on GH, PRL, and cortisol release. In addition, we studied the effect of administration of a single dose of GHRH-(1-29)-NH2 (1.0 microgram/kg), alone or in combination with a low dose of hexarelin (0.125 microgram/kg). Dose-response curves for the maximum GH response and maximum percent change in serum PRL and cortisol concentrations from baseline were constructed. The GH dose-response curve reached a plateau of 140 mU/L, corresponding to a hexarelin dose of 1.0 microgram/kg, with an ED50 of 0.48 +/- 0.02 microgram/kg (mean +/- SEM). The PRL dose-response curve reached a plateau of 180% for the maximum percent rise from baseline, corresponding to a hexarelin dose of 1.0 microgram/kg, with an ED50 of 0.39 +/- 0.02 microgram/kg. The cortisol dose-response curve showed a step increase to approximately 40% at a hexarelin dose of 0.5 microgram/kg. The coadministration of GHRH-(1-29)-NH2 (1.0 microgram/kg) and low dose hexarelin (0.125 microgram/kg) resulted in massive GH release (115 +/- 32.8 mU/L), a moderate rise in serum PRL (84.9 +/- 27.5%), and no rise in serum cortisol. These data show that iv hexarelin was capable of inducing GH, PRL, and cortisol release in a dose-dependent manner. Low dose hexarelin was synergistic with GHRH and potent for GH release with a minimal effect on other hormones.

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