Neurotensin is a 13-amino acid neuropeptide involved in neurotransmission in the CNS and PNS. In the CNS, it interacts with dopamine. It also plays a tonic stimulatory role on HPA axis activity and an inhibitory effect on vasopressin secretion. Through its diverse expression, Neurotensin modulates analgesia, hypothermia, appetite, fear response, gut motility and locomotor activity.
By selective targeting or blockade of specific neurotensin receptors, investigators have identified potential drugs for use in the treatment of schizophrenia, alcoholism, chronic pain, or cancer.