Cholecystokinin octapeptide (CCK-8) in doses of 5 or 10 μg/kg was injected intraperitoneally to 24 hr food-deprived rats before a 30 min feeding period, and the dopamine (DA), norepinephrine (NE) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) contents of the hypothalamus, mesencephalon, amygdala, hippocampus and striatum were measured thereafter. The experimental procedure (deprivation + food intake) alone could induce changes in the brain monoamine contents of saline-treated animals as compared to the nondeprived control group. The most striking effect was observed in the hypothalamus, in which the contents of all three monoamines decreased. In the deprived control group there was a significant positive correlation calculated by linear regression analysis between the amount of food eaten and the DA contents of the amygdala. Injection of CCK-8 before food intake testing decreased the DA contents of the hypothalamus. In the CCK-8-treated animals the correlation between food intake and amygdaloid DA contents disappeared. The CCK-8 treatment specifically gave rise to a significant positive correlation between the amount of food eaten and the NE content of the hypothalamus; such a relation could not be observed in the saline-treated group. The hypothalamic NE contents altered in parallel with the effectiveness of both doses of CCK-8 in inhibiting food intake. The results indicate the importance of the hypothalamic NE system in the food intake-suppressing effect of CCK-8.