The effects of various centrally-acting drugs on steroid metabolism in the liver and pituitary hormone concentration in the serum of male and female rats were investigated using well characterized and tested methods. It was seen that picrotoxin, morphine and LSD had a general stimulatory action on hepatic steroid metabolism (morphine only in the female) whereas thiosemicarbazide was without effect. Clonidine gave a move towards a more "female" type of metabolism in the male animals. All drugs tested except thiosemicarbazide had effects on pituitary hormone secretion although not always the effects that have been previously reported. Discrepancies from previous reports are discussed. Correlations between changes in hepatic steroid metabolism and changes in pituitary hormone secretion can be observed but are not consistent. It is concluded that, of the drugs tested, only clonidine may have an effect on "feminizing factor" secretion indicating that this may be controlled in part by the noradrenergic system of the brain.
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