melanocortin-based peptide pt-141

Melanocortin-Based Peptide PT-141: The Scientific Guide

Exploring the benefits and potential use cases for the peptide PT-141 has been a hot topic among researchers for years. Studies to date have shown that the peptide is capable of numerous health benefits, and its full potential is yet to be understood. 

PT-141 primarily activates the melanocortin four receptor, which works on stimulating the central nervous system and induces sexual arousal.

Animal studies revealed early on that increased sexual activity was found in male and female mice. PT-141 has the potential to have a positive impact on a variety of sexual disorders including those such as female sexual arousal disorder.

Studies on this peptide have shown that it can deliver results that many traditional medications fail to accomplish regarding sexual disorders. It may primarily activate MC-4R, but PT-141 binds to MC-1R and MC-4R.

Researchers have discovered that PT-141 may offer more health benefits outside of sexual disorders. This guide will act as a comprehensive guide on PT-141 regarding its efficacy, mechanism of action, use cases, and much more.

How Does PT-141 Work?

PT-141, also known as bremelanotide, comprises seven amino acids. Understanding the role of this peptide requires an understanding of melanocortin receptors (MR) within the body.

These receptors are generally found in the CNS and the skin. MR have the ability to make improvements in sexual disorders and increase pigmentation through the activation of melanocytes.

The PT-141 peptide is known to engage with MRs MC-1R, MC-3R, and MC-4R. Its primary focus resides with MC-4R, and this receptor directly correlates to modulating sexual desire and disorders.

Researchers have found that the peptide’s mechanism of action correlates to the agonist of the MR. Another important note is that different receptor subtypes provide varying levels of potency.

Current studies are revealing other significant benefits and implications related to the agonism of MR. Much of the research to date has focused on various sexual disorders, but PT-141 could also help with the effects on food intake, energy regulation, and more.

The focus on PT-141 research is vast, and the list of existing and potential benefits continues to expand.

The Benefits of PT-141

The continuous exploration of PT-141 has uncovered a surprising number of health benefits over the years. Much of the research focuses on sexual disorders due to the peptide’s agonism of MC-4R, but this is far from PT-141’s full potential.

Below are some of the most significant health benefits of the PT-141 peptide.

Treatment of Erectile Dysfunction

Researchers have discovered that PT-141 can be beneficial for individuals who are dealing with erectile dysfunction. Recent studies indicate that it may be an excellent alternative for medications that may not provide satisfactory results.

Medications like Viagra are generally well known, but the drug isn’t effective for every case of erectile dysfunction. Numerous clinical trials offer a rather consistent track record for the administration of PT-141 for cases of erectile dysfunction.

The peptide is seen as an alternative to traditional treatments in hopes of better results with fewer side effects and broader bioavailability.

More clinical trials are needed to validate the effects of this peptide and its effects on erectile dysfunction.

General Sexual Dysfunction

Complications of sexual dysfunction and decreased libido are relatively common issues in many people worldwide.

 Researchers have discovered through numerous studies that PT-141 has the ability to stimulate sexual desire in both men and women.

These results also didn’t require sexual stimulation, and the benefit was also seen in men both with and without erectile dysfunction.

The findings consider sexual dysfunction as a whole, which is why researchers are looking at PT-141 as a treatment option for treating sexual dysfunction and other sexual disorders.

Treatment of Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder

PT-141 is a therapeutic choice to address hypoactive sexual desire disorder in women. This condition, characterized by a diminished interest in sexual activities, affects approximately 10% of women in the United States and is linked to adverse emotional conditions like depression.

This is another case where the activation of MC-4R is useful, as it can increase the release of dopamine.

 Research has shown that PT-141 can be helpful for premenopausal women. Studies of many women who have used PT-141 for this purpose have reported reduced stress pertaining to sexual intercourse. 

The potential benefits of PT-141 continue to increase as research continues, and those listed above appear to be just scratching the surface of what the peptide is capable of – but the potential side effects are equally important to consider.


The Side Effects of PT-141

Understanding the potential side effects of this peptide requires ongoing research, but current studies have revealed some common adverse effects of PT-141.

It’s important to note that experiencing any or all of these side effects is not a certainty, but they should be indicated in continuing research outcomes. 

Some side effects are more common than others. This is also true regarding mild to severe health concerns.

Some common side effects of PT-141 include:

    • Headaches

    • Reactions to injection sites

    • Nausea

More uncommon side effects include the following:

    • Vomiting

    • Restless leg syndrome

    • Local hyperpigmentation

    • Arthralgia

    • Increase in blood pressure

These side effects require further exploration into how they arise in different individuals. 

Research has also indicated that PT-141 may not be suitable for certain individuals due to the potential increases in blood pressure.

Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant or people who have cardiovascular disease or are diagnosed with uncontrolled hypertension may want to avoid PT-141 treatments as this is a research chemical undergoing testing by researchers and institutions. 

Clinical Studies on PT-141

There are numerous clinical studies that focus on PT-141 administration in different capacities. Specific use cases continue to be discovered with research, but much of the research to date has focused on the MR of the CNS. 

Further clinical studies have focused on other specific applications, including erectile dysfunction and the peptide’s long-term safety and efficacy in various use cases. 

The research and clinical studies that have been performed have also looked at how the peptide affects men and women differently.

Much of the research surrounding PT-141 focuses on sexual disorders, but PT-141 has shown efficacy and substantial benefit for a variety of health concerns, such as those related to mental health and cancer.

The Effects of PT-141 on Cancer and Mental Health

The effects of PT-141 pertaining to sexual disorders, the CNS, and even dopamine levels directly correlate to mental health changes. 

Dopamine levels alone can significantly affect one’s mood, and the same is true for sexual disorders and complications with the CNS.

Many sexual disorders can cause other health complications, such as depression, anxiety, heart disease, substance abuse, high blood pressure, and more.

 Studies in the administration of PT-141 have shown that it can help alleviate these issues by working with the CNS from multiple angles.

PT-141 has also shown efficacy in the treatment of cancer due to its binding with MC-1R.

Variants of MC-1R can cause an increased risk for the formation of squamous cell and basal cell carcinoma. MC-1R is also known as a stimulus for DNA repair pathways and could benefit the prevention and treatment of such cancers.

This information has led researchers to explore PT-141s efficacy regarding cancer, in addition to the future of PT-141’s benefits. 

The Future of PT-141 In Research

Scientists are exploring many different areas of research, but many of PT-141’s benefits pertain to sexual dysfunction. It’s also known that the peptide is capable of other potential health benefits. 

Many of these benefits require further exploration, as they simply don’t have as much clinical research to support the use cases.

Melanocortin peptides have been shown to impact certain biological functions. This is why researchers are looking at PT-141 as a treatment option for sexual disorders, hunger, mental health, cancers, neural activity, and much more.

It’s paramount that scientists only use the highest quality peptide for their research so that future developments can be as concrete and effective as possible.

Get the Best Results for Your Research

Research on PT-141 has come a long way. The peptide has shown to be quite promising as a treatment solution for sexual dysfunction, depression, and much more.

The first step for effective research is using the best quality peptides available. You can start by visiting Research Chemical and reviewing the industry information and available peptides. 

Don’t hesitate to check out their research blog for industry updates, side effects, scientific literature, and product comparisons as well.

Scientific Research & References:

1. King, S. H., Mayorov, A. V., Balse-Srinivasan, P., Hruby, V. J., Vanderah, T. W., & Wessells, H. (2007). Melanocortin receptors, melanotropic peptides and penile erection. Current topics in medicinal chemistry7(11), 1111-1119.

2. Clayton, A. H., Althof, S. E., Kingsberg, S., DeRogatis, L. R., Kroll, R., Goldstein, I., … & Portman, D. J. (2016). Bremelanotide for female sexual dysfunctions in premenopausal women: a randomized, placebo-controlled dose-finding trial. Women’s Health, 12(3), 325-337.

3. Simon, JA, Kingsberg, SA, Portman, D., Williams, LA, Krop, J., Jordan, R., … & Clayton, AH (2019). Long-term safety and efficacy of bremelanotide for hypoactive sexual desire disorder. Obstetrics and Gynecology 134 (5), 909.

4. Semple, E. A. (2017). Hypothalamic Melanocortin 4 Receptors Regulate Sexual Behavior in Mice (Doctoral dissertation, University of Toledo).

5. King, S. H., Mayorov, A. V., Balse-Srinivasan, P., Hruby, V. J., Vanderah, T. W., & Wessells, H. (2007). Melanocortin receptors, melanotropic peptides and penile erection. Current topics in medicinal chemistry7(11), 1111-1119.

6. Shadiack, A. M., Sharma, S. D., Earle, D. C., Spana, C., & Hallam, T. J. (2007). Melanocortins in the treatment of male and female sexual dysfunction. Current topics in medicinal chemistry7(11), 1137-1144.

7. Walsh, K. E., & Berman, J. R. (2004). Sexual dysfunction in the older woman: an overview of the current understanding and management. Drugs & aging21, 655-675.

8. Mun, Y. W., Kim, W. H., & Shin, D. (2023). Melanocortin 1 Receptor (MC1R): Potentials as Therapeutic Targets.

9. Diamond, L. E., Earle, D. C., Heiman, J. R., Rosen, R. C., Perelman, M. A., & Harning, R. (2006). An effect on the subjective sexual response in premenopausal women with sexual arousal disorder by bremelanotide (PT‐141), a melanocortin receptor agonist. The journal of sexual medicine3(4), 628-638. 


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Melanocortin-Based Peptide PT-141: Current Research Review