Researchers studied the effect of increased kisspeptin activity in male mice via a pharmacosynthetic technique called DREADDs (it stands for Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs). A combination of targeted chemical injections selectively stimulated kisspeptin-responsive neurons; once they’d been so activated, the mice became more driven to pursue the female mice, and for significantly longer intervals, and were less anxious while they did so.
This study marks the first time the hormone has ever been linked to a command of sexual and social behavior. The researchers concluded that kisspeptin is responsible for coordinating male sexual motivation and anxiety in concert to maximize the possibility of sex. The potentially upsetting discovery was presented today at the annual conference of the Society For Endocrinology.