It has been demonstrated that L-pipecolic acid (L-PA), a major metabolic intermediate of L-lysine (L-Lys) in the mammalian and chicken brain, is involved in the functioning of the GABAergic system. A previous study has shown that intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) injection of L-PA suppressed feeding and induced sleep-like behavior in neonatal chicks; however, the precise relationship between the GABAergic system and L-PA has not been clarified. In the present study, the role of the GABA-A or GABA-B receptors in the suppression of food intake and induction of sleeping-like behavior by L-PA was investigated. Chicks were injected i.c.v. with the GABA-A antagonist picrotoxin or GABA-B antagonist CGP54626 along with L-PA. Although suppression of food intake by L-PA was restored partially by co-injection with CGP54626, but not picrotoxin, sleep-like behavior induced by L-PA was suppressed significantly by both antagonists. These results suggested that L-PA activated both GABA-A and GABA-B receptors, and GABA-B receptors alone contributed to food intake whereas both receptors contributed to sleep-like behavior.
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