The role of the hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih) mediated by HCN channels in temperature sensing by the hypothalamus was addressed. In warm-sensitive neurons (WSNs), exposure to ZD7288, an inhibitor of Ih mediated by hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels, decreased their action potential amplitudes and frequencies significantly. By contrast, ZD7288 had little or no effect on temperature-insensitive neurons (TINs). Exposure of WSNs to ZD7288 led to a significant increase in the duration of the inter-spike interval and a reduction of Ih irreversibly. These results suggest that ZD7288 have the contrasting effects on the firing patterns of WSNs versus TINs, which implies HCN channels play a central role in temperature sensing by hypothalamic neurons.