va·​so·​pres·​sin ˌvā-zō-ˈpre-sᵊn How to pronounce vasopressin (audio)
: a polypeptide hormone secreted by the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland or obtained synthetically that increases blood pressure and decreases urine flow

called also antidiuretic hormone

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web My blood is pumping with passion, sped on by norepinephrine and vasopressin. Christie Wilcox, Discover Magazine, 26 July 2012 Neuropeptides include oxytocin, vasopressin, and endorphins - which do feature in the paper. Neuroskeptic, Discover Magazine, 8 May 2017 This drug, which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2018, is a type of drug called a vasopressin receptor antagonist and has been shown to slow the decline in kidney function and reduce pain symptoms in people with ADPKD, says the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation. Hallie Levine,, 19 Nov. 2021 Dehydration leads to a variety of physiological changes that contribute to nausea, including reductions in gut blood flow and the release of arginine vasopressin (AVP), a hormone that helps your body conserve water but that may also act on your brain to exacerbate nausea. Patrick Wilson, Outside Online, 13 Apr. 2020 Problems with vasopressin can cause a disorder first described in the 18th century as diabetes insipidus (D.I.) — a disease producing profuse and watery (insipid) urine. Lisa Sanders, M.d., New York Times, 1 Sep. 2022 Oxytocin, vasopressin, and other closely related hormones are ubiquitous in nature. Steven Phelps, Scientific American, 18 Jan. 2023 The brain communicates all this with a hormone called vasopressin. Lisa Sanders, M.d., New York Times, 1 Sep. 2022 These hormones, which are the bird versions of the human hormones oxytocin and vasopressin, are involved in the formation of bonds between bird mates. Elizabeth Preston, Discover Magazine, 9 Dec. 2014 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'vasopressin.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


from Vasopressin, a trademark

First Known Use

1927, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of vasopressin was in 1927

Dictionary Entries Near vasopressin

Cite this Entry

“Vasopressin.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2023.

Medical Definition


va·​so·​pres·​sin ˌvā-zō-ˈpres-ᵊn How to pronounce vasopressin (audio)
: a polypeptide hormone that is secreted together with oxytocin by the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland, is also obtained synthetically, and increases blood pressure and exerts an antidiuretic effect

called also antidiuretic hormone, beta-hypophamine

see arginine vasopressin, lysine vasopressin, pitressin

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