Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Brain Plays Key Role In Appetite By Regulating Free Radicals

Date:
August 3, 2008
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have found the brain's appetite center uses fat for fuel by involving oxygen free radicals -- molecules associated with aging and neurodegeneration. The findings suggest that antioxidants could play a role in weight control.

Researchers have found the brain's appetite center uses fat for fuel by involving oxygen free radicals—molecules associated with aging and neurodegeneration. The findings suggest that antioxidants could play a role in weight control.
Credit: iStockphoto/Grigory Bibikov

Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have found the brain's appetite center uses fat for fuel by involving oxygen free radicals—molecules associated with aging and neurodegeneration. The findings, reported in the journal Nature, suggest that antioxidants could play a role in weight control.

The study's lead authors were Sabrina Diano and Tamas Horvath, who are an associate professor and professor, respectively, in the Departments of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences and Neurobiology. Horvath is also chair of the Section of Comparative Medicine.

"In contrast to the accepted view, the brain does use fat as fuel," said Horvath. "Our study shows that the minute-by-minute control of appetite is regulated by free radicals, implying that if you interfere with free radicals, you may affect eating and satiety."

The results also imply, added Horvath, "that each time a feeling of fullness or satiety is reached during a meal, you may be chipping away some time from your maximum lifespan as the most free radicals are produced when satiety-promoting brain cells are active."

Diano, Horvath and colleagues conducted the study in mice to better understand how the brain mediates neuronal activation in response to ghrelin, a hormone produced in the stomach and previously associated with growth hormone release, appetite, learning and memory.

They found that ghrelin-induced increase in appetite is driven by burning fat in hypothalamic mitochondria, which produces free radicals that are scavenged by a mitochondrial protein called uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2)

"The timing of taking antioxidants may be critical for the control of appetite," said Diano. "If taken on an empty stomach antioxidants may further increase appetite, however when taken with food, they may affect satiety. Further studies are needed to determine whether any regiment of orally taken antioxidants could be used to control appetite in animals and humans."

Other authors on the study included Zane B. Andrews, Zhong-Wu Liu, Nicholas Walllingford, Derek M Erion, Erzsebet Borok, Jeffrey M. Friedman, Matthias H. Tschφp, Marya Shanabrough, Gary Cline, Gerald I. Shulman, Anna Coppola and Xiao-Bing Gao.

 


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Andrews et al. UCP2 mediates ghrelin's action on NPY/AgRP neurons by lowering free radicals. Nature, 2008; DOI: 10.1038/nature07181

Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Brain Plays Key Role In Appetite By Regulating Free Radicals." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080730140720.htm>.
Yale University. (2008, August 3). Brain Plays Key Role In Appetite By Regulating Free Radicals. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080730140720.htm
Yale University. "Brain Plays Key Role In Appetite By Regulating Free Radicals." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080730140720.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) — President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins