POMC (proopiomelanocortin) makes a protein that is cut into peptides that have different functions in the body (R). 

Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) is produced from the POMC protein and it helps maintain blood sugar levels, protects the body from stress, and stops inflammation (R).

Other peptides formed from POMC include: β-MSH peptide, which plays a role in weight regulation; α-MSH peptide, which helps maintain the correct energy balance; γ-MSH, which is involved in regulating the amount of sodium in the body and controlling blood pressure; and β-endorphin, which stimulates signaling for pain relief (R).


Beta-endorphin and Met-enkephalin are endogenous opiates.

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