Abstract Hypothalamic neuronal activities of noradrenaline, dopamine and serotonin as well as serum glucose concentrations were simultaneously monitored 60 min after the third cerebroventricular injection of neostigmine, a cholinesterase inhibitor, in rats. Each neuronal activity was assessed from a ratio of the concentration of the major metabolite to that of its precursor monoamine itself by using the technique of gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Neostigmine caused significant increases in serum glucose concentrations, hypothalamic noradrenergic and dopaminergic neuronal activities, and significantly suppressed hypothalamic serotonergic neuronal activity. All these responses to neostigmine were completely inhibited by the co-administration of atropine. These observations emphasize the important role of the interactions between cholinergic (muscarinic) and monoaminergic neurons in the brain.