Galanin receptor-mediated inhibition of glutamate release in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus

Gregory A. Kinney, Paul J. Emmerson, Richard J. Miller*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


It is thought that galanin, a 29 amino acid neuropeptide, is involved in various neuronal functions, including the regulation of food intake and hormone release. Consistent with this idea, galanin receptors have been demonstrated throughout the brain, with high levels being observed in the hypothalamus. However, little is known about the mechanisms by which galanin elicits its actions in the brain. Therefore, we studied the effects of galanin and its analogs on synaptic transmission using an in vitro slice preparation of rat hypothalamus. In arcuate nucleus neurons, application of galanin resulted in an inhibition of evoked glutamatergic EPSCs and a decrease in paired-pulse depression, indicating a presynaptic action. The fragments galanin 1-16 and 1-15 produced a robust depression of synaptic transmission, whereas the fragment 3-29 produced a lesser degree of depression. The chimeric peptides C7, M15, M32, and M40, which have been reported to antagonize some actions of galanin, all produced varying degrees of depression of evoked EPSCs. In a minority of cases, C7, M15, and M40 antagonized the actions of galanin. Analysis of mEPSCs in the presence of TTX and Cd2+, or after application of α-latrotoxin, indicated a site of action for galanin downstream of Ca2+ entry. Thus, our data suggest that galanin acts via several subtypes of presynaptic receptors to depress synaptic transmission in the rat arcuate nucleus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3489-3500
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 15 1998


  • Depression
  • EPSC
  • Galanin
  • Galanin receptors
  • Presynaptic
  • Transmitter release
  • mEPSC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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