Hormones are that pesky substance responsible for parasympathetic bodily processes, like growing hair from the inside of your nose to making you grow several inches taller over a summer. They can also affect your mood, as anyone who has dealt with PMDD is aware. In males, hormones don’t have to work overtime to grow a baby, but they control other equally important functions.
A new study presented on Saturday by the Society for Endocrinology’s annual conference’s annual conference shines a light on kisspeptin, a hormone that may responsible for male sex drive and mood. Two things that are of crucial important to overall physical and mental health. Dr. Daniel Adekunbi led a study that stimulated a kisspeptin-sensitive area of amygdala in mice; that part of the brain is responsible for regulating emotions and sexual drive. They noticed that the male mice were more eager to cozy up to the female mice, and exhibited less anxiety in approaching the ladies for a night in the Fantasy Suite.
Dr. Adekunbi says that “kisspeptin neurons [coordinate] sexual preference and anxiety behavior towards copulation, indicating that amygdala kisspeptin functionally promotes maximal reproductive success in the male.” He also said that in men, sexual dysfunction and anxiety disorders often occur in tandem, which is the understatement of the century.
Kisspeptin already present in the body. It is released by the hypothalamus, and is implicated in helping the body begin puberty (sorry for bringing up the embarrassing memories of youth). Kisspeptin also has a unique anti-tumor quality: 1996, scientists discovered that injecting the hormone into cancerous cells suppressed them from growing larger. The hormone can’t cure cancer, rather, scientists concluded that Kisspeptin helps keep healthy and non-metatastic.
This study provides promising results for treatments that could help regulate pathological anxiety and sexual dysfunction in men. Further studies are needed. It is unclear if the same kisspeptide activation works on women — after all, the female mice may need a break after this study.