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עמוד בית
Thu, 18.07.24

Special Section: Clinic and Science

IMAJ | volume

Journal 2, February 2001
pages: 144-146

The role of the hypothalamic neuropeptides hypocretin/orexinin in the sleep-wake cycle


    The novel neuropeptides hypocretin/orexin have recently been located on the lateral hypothalamus cells. This system has been linked to the regulation of both feeding and sleep, and recent studies have found an association between a defect in these neuropeptides and narcolepsy. We conducted a MED­LINE review of all the articles published since the discovery of hypocretin/orexin peptides, narrowing the field to the relation­ship between these neuropeptides and sleep. The finding of a deletion in the transcription of the hypocretin receptor 2 gene in narcoleptic Doberman pinschers and the development of a knockout of the hypocretin gene in mice pointed to the relevance of this system in the sleep-wake cycle. We provide further evidence of the role of the hypocretin/orexin system in narcolepsy and in sleep regulation and present an integrative model of the pathophysiology of narcolepsy. The discovery of the link between these peptides and narcolepsy opens new avenues to both the understanding of sleep mechanisms and therapeutic implications for sleep disorders.

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