Hypothalamic Neuroscience and Neuroendocrinology Australasia

We are an Australasian research group studying the interactions between hormones/neurotransmitters in the brain, its structure and the effects on homeostasis


Dear HNNA members,

I wanted to provide an update for the HNNA Satellite meeting planned for December. As you are all aware, the COVID19 situation is continuing to have an impact and because of this ANS 2021 in Melbourne has been forced to cancel its face-to-face meeting.

This means that we have decided to adapt as well and we will now have an independent virtual symposium. It will now be on the 2nd of December, rather than Saturday the 4th (no need to have on a weekend anymore).

We have booked the auditorum of the Kenneth Myer Building for the 2nd, so we are hopefully to have a “socially distanced-Covid responsible” live virtual symposium for those in Melbourne. The Centre for Neuroendocrinology will do the same in Otago NZ, and we hope we can do the same in other parts of the country.

In exciting news we have 3 high profile international speakers for the virtual sympoisum…

Professor Brad Lowell
Harvard Medical School
Title: The Neural Basis for Hunger

Professor Joel Elmquist
Director, Centre for Hypothalamic Research
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Title: Using mouse genetics to unravel the roles of melanocortin peptides in regulating metabolism.

Professor Alex Caron
Canada Research Chair in NeuroMetabolic Pharmacology
Professeur adjoint | Faculté de Pharmacie | Université Laval
Title: Interactions between Nordic environment and Chronobiotics: impact on cardiometabolic and neurometabolic health.

For more details, see attachments. I would like to thank Kathy Mountjoy (University of Auckland) for organising these fantastic keynote speakers.

I would also like to invite people to self-nominate to speak at the virtual symposium. I have received a few nominations but would love some more. Our collective ethos is to include everyone where possible and give everyone an equal opportunity to present data, not just those that are “regular” speakers. Ideally, it would be great to have most labs represented if possible. We will have 20 min talks as well as short data blitz, instead of posters. Please let me know if you’re interested asap.
More to come.

Zane Andrews
HNNA President

Meetings & Symposia

Virtual Seminar Series

Coming soon!

23rd International Symposium on Regulatory Peptides

August 15-20th, 2021
Acapulco, Mexico

Download the scientific program here

The 3rd Australian Appetitive Motivation Symposium

Save the date – 1/10/21
University of Newcastle

Annual Meeting

December 2nd 2021- Kenneth Myer Building, The Florey Institute, Parkville, VIC, Australia

HNNA 2021 Satellite Meeting

Click here to download the event’s information

Update – Call for speakers


HNNA would like to congratulate the winners of the publication prizes for 2020. The papers were judged on Anticipated future impact; Quality of work, Scope of work; and Relevance to HNNA field. We would like to thank everyone for submitting papers, and it was a privilege to read the great science coming from the HNNA fraternity.
The winners were, across 3 categories:
PhD: Soniya Xavier (first author) for “High Maternal Omega-3 Supplementation Dysregulates Body Weight and Leptin in Newborn Male and Female Rats: Implications for Hypothalamic Developmental Programming” (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33396616/)

Post Doc: Claire Foldi (last author) for “Suppression of corticostriatal circuit activity improves cognitive flexibility and prevents body weight loss in activity-based anorexia in rat” (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32892984/)

Group Leader: Andrew Lawrence (last author) for “Acetylcholine Muscarinic M 4 Receptors as a Therapeutic Target for Alcohol Use Disorder: Converging Evidence From Humans and Rodents” (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32331824/)
Get writing and submitting for the chance at glory in the 2021 round!

About HNNA

Welcome to HNNA, an Australasian grouping of neuroendocrinologists and neuroscientists interested in understanding how the brain controls hormone secretion, and how hormones act to influence brain function.

HNNA’s mission is to foster an inclusive, engaged and diverse group of researchers and support research in neuroendocrinology and neuroscience in Australasia. We aim to achieve this through regular meetings, symposia and seminars.

The group started off life as “Neuroendocrinology Australasia”, with a focus on classical neuroendocrine relationships between the hypothalamus and pituitary gland, as well as the pituitary-dependent endocrine hormones. More recently, it has become apparent that many of our scientists were interested in broader relationships between hormones in various body systems and how they influence brain function. For example, hormones from stomach, gut, fat and pancreas all act in the hypothalamus to influence food intake. Hence, we have tried to recognize this breadth but adopting “Hypothalamic Neuroscience” as part of our name.

These “neuroendocrine” interactions of hormones within the brain have critical roles in many important body processes including development, metabolism, reproduction, behavior and our ability to deal with stress. Consequently, neuroendocrine interactions are important in a variety of disease states, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes, infertility, anxiety and depression.

HNNA represents the neuroscientists and neuroendocrinologists in Australia, New Zealand and South-East Asia on the council of the International Neuroendocrine Federation (INF). The INF supports major international meetings in Neuroendocrinology, as well as providing training opportunities for students interested in this field


Become a member to stay in the loop for all our exciting scientific achievements!

By becoming a member of HNNA, you automatically become a member of the International Neuroendocrine Federation (INF).

Membership fees were decided at the HNNA symposium in 2017 and set at $150 for two years for a group subscription of 3 people or less and $400 for two years for a larger group. To become a member click on the button. Lab heads need to sign up first and invite members of their lab to join.

Research Opportunities

Coming soon!