Definition

A neuroactive metabolite of progesterone and a barbiturate-like modulator of central gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors that modify a range of behaviors, including the stress response. is a steroid created in the body when progesterone, the female sex hormone, is metabolized. Typically, THP (allopregnanolone) is released in the brain in response to stress, and quiets the neural system within 30 minutes of escalation. This steroid hormone has recently been found to be responsible for the extreme mood swings found in teenagers. In adults and pre-pubescent chlidren THP normally helps soothe the activity of brain cells by binding to GABA receptors that inhibit accelerating electrical activity. However, in pubescent teenagers THP actually becomes a GABA receptor antagonist. GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain with most sedatives (tranquilizers, anesthetics and alcohol) acting on the GABA receptor. [HMDB]