Function of melatonin in thermoregulatory processes

Seppo Saarela, Russel J. Reiter

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

112 Scopus citations


Accumulated information shows that, besides its role in the timing of seasonal reproduction, melatonin also plays an important role in seasonal thermoregulatory adjustments of animals including torpor and hibernation. Furthermore, melatonin has a crucial role in circadian thermoregulatory adjustments of body temperature (Tb). Melatonin appears to send signals to the preoptic area of anterior hypothalamus PoAH) where it adjusts the set point of Tb consistent with the metabolic rate of the animal. This new function for melatonin as a transducer mediating information about energy balance has been suggested in this review. Melatonin also adjusts the activity of the biological clock in vertebrates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-311
Number of pages17
JournalLife Sciences
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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