The Comparison of the Effects of Acute Swimming Stress on Plasma Corticosterone and Leptin Concentration in Male and Female Rats

  • Parvin Zareian Mail Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom, Iran.
  • Mohammad Vahid Karimi Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom, Iran.
  • Gita Dorneyani Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom, Iran.
Stress, Leptin, Corticosterone, Rat


The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of acute swimming stress on plasma corticosterone and leptin levels in female and male rats. Thirty- seven adult male (n=20) and female (n=20) Sprague Dawley rats (200-250 g weight) were used. The leptin and corticosterone levels were measured following swimming stress (10 minutes) or no stress. Plasma leptin and corticosterone were measured by ELISA system. The plasma leptin and corticosterone levels were significantly increased in female and male rats by swimming stress. Plasma leptin level was not correlated significantly with plasma corticosterone in all groups. There were no sex differences in leptin level among stressed and non stressed rats. The results suggest that changes in plasma leptin level could not be associated with stimulation of corticosterone secretion from adrenal glands and leptin secretion is not sex dependent.


Hernández C, Simó R, Chacón P, Sabin P, Baena JA, Castellanos JM, Planas M. Influence of surgical stress and parenteral nutrition on serum leptin concentration. Clin Nutr 2000;19(1):61-4.

Evans BA, Agar L, Summers RJ. The role of the sympathetic nervous system in the regulation of leptin synthesis in C57BL/6 mice. FEBS Lett 1999;444(2-3):149-54.

Pralong FP, Gaillard RC. Neuroendocrine effects of leptin. Pituitary 2001;4(1-2):25-32.

Kajantie E, Phillips DI. The effects of sex and hormonal status on the physiological response to acute psychosocial stress. Psychoneuroendocrinology 2006;31(2):151-78.

Rivier C. Gender, sex steroids, corticotropin-releasing factor, nitric oxide, and the HPA response to stress. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 1999;64(4):739-51.

Vendruscolo LF, Pamplona FA, Takahashi RN. Strain andsex differences in the expression of nociceptive behavior and stress-induced analgesia in rats. Brain Res 2004;1030(2):277-83.

Ahima RS, Prabakaran D, Flier JS. Postnatal leptin surge and regulation of circadian rhythm of leptin by feeding. Implications for energy homeostasis and neuroendocrine function. J Clin Invest 1998;101(5):1020-7.

Patterson-Buckendahl P, Pohorecky LA, Kvetnansky R. Differing effects of acute and chronic stressors on plasma osteocalcin and leptin in rats. Stress 2007;10(2):163-72.

Konishi N, Otaka M, Odashima M, Jin M, Wada I, Komatsu K, et al. Systemic stress increases serum leptin level. J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2006;21(7):1099-102.

Sandoval DA, Davis SN. Leptin: metabolic control and regulation. J Diabetes Complications 2003;17(2):108-13.

Gavrilovic L, Dronjak S. Activation of rat pituitaryadrenocortical and sympatho-adrenomedullary system in response to different stressors. Neuro Endocrinol Lett 2005;26(5):515-20.

Schafroth U, Godang K, Ueland T, Bollerslev J. Leptin response to endogenous acute stress is independent of pituitary function. Eur J Endocrinol 2001;145(3):295-301.

Spinedi E, Gaillard RC. A regulatory loop between the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and circulating leptin: a physiological role of ACTH. Endocrinology 1998;139(9):4016-20.

Martelli F, Kosior-Korzecka U, Ducci M, Buoncristiani P, Bobowiec R. The influence of acth and dexamethasone on leptin and no release from ovine pituitary cells in vitro. Ann Della Fac Med Veterinaria 2005;LVIII:27-32.

Vettor R, Vicennati V, Gambineri A, Pagano C, Calzoni F, Pasquali R. Leptin and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activity in women with different obesity phenotypes.Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1997;21(8):708-11.

Perelló M, Chacon F, Cardinali DP, Esquifino AI, Spinedi E. Effect of social isolation on 24-h pattern of stress hormones and leptin in rats. Life Sci 2006;78(16):1857-62.

Ceballos RM, Faraday MM, Klein LC. Rat strain and sex differences in leptin responses to immobilization stress. J Individual Differences 2006;27(3):136-46.

Bornstein SR. Is leptin a stress related peptide? Nat Med 1997;3(9):937.

Ahima RS, Prabakaran D, Mantzoros C, Qu D, Lowell B, Maratos-Flier E, et al. Role of leptin in the neuroendocrine response to fasting. Nature;382(6588):250-2.

Rivier C. Female rats release more corticosterone than males in response to alcohol: influence of circulating sex steroids and possible consequences for blood alcohol levels. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 1993;17(4):854-9.

Ling S, Jamali F. Effect of cannulation surgery and restraint stress on the plasma corticosterone concentration in the rat: application of an improved corticosterone HPLC assay. J Pharm Pharm Sci 2003;6(2):246-51.

Rohleder N, Schommer NC, Hellhammer DH, Engel R, Kirschbaum C. Sex differences in glucocorticoidsensitivity of proinflammatory cytokine production after psychosocial stress. Psychosom Med 2001;63(6):966-72.

Burow A, Day HE, Campeau S. A detailed characterization of loud noise stress: Intensity analysis of hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenocortical axis and brain activation. Brain Res 2005;1062(1-2):63-73.

Priego T, Sánchez J, Picó C, Palou A. Sex-associated differences in the leptin and ghrelin systems related with the induction of hyperphagia under high-fat diet exposure in rats. Horm Behav 2009;55(1):33-40.

Mulet T, Picó C, Oliver P, Palou A. Blood leptin homeostasis: sex-associated differences in circulating leptin levels in rats are independent of tissue leptin expression. Int J Biochem Cell Biol 2003;35(1):104-10.

How to Cite
Zareian P, Karimi MV, Dorneyani G. The Comparison of the Effects of Acute Swimming Stress on Plasma Corticosterone and Leptin Concentration in Male and Female Rats. Acta Med Iran. 49(5):284-287.