Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Obesity is associated with altered brain function

Date:
February 9, 2012
Source:
Suomen Akatemia (Academy of Finland)
Summary:
Researchers have found new evidence for the role of the brain in obesity.

Researchers at the University of Turku and Aalto University have found new evidence for the role of the brain in obesity.

In most western countries the annual increase in the prevalence and the severity of obesity is currently substantial. Although obesity typically results simply from excessive energy intake, it is currently unclear why some people are prone to overeating and gaining weight.

Because the central nervous system is intimately involved in processing of hunger signals and controlling food intake, it is possible that the cause of weight gain and obesity might be in the brain.

Researchers at the University of Turku and Aalto University have now found new evidence for the role of the brain in obesity. The researchers measured the functioning brain circuits involved in with multiple brain imaging methods.

The results revealed that in obese versus lean individuals, brain glucose metabolism was significantly higher in the brain's striatal regions, which are involved in processing of rewards. Moreover, obese individual's reward system responded more vigorously to food pictures, whereas responses in the frontal cortical regions involved in cognitive control were dampened.

"The results suggest that obese individuals' brains might constantly generate signals that promote eating even when the body would not require additional energy uptake," says Adjunct Professor Lauri Nummenmaa from the University of Turku.

"The results highlight the role of the brain in obesity and weight gaining. The results have major implications on the current models of obesity, but also on development of pharmacological and psychological treatments of obesity," Nummenmaa says.

The participants were morbidly obese individuals and lean, healthy controls. Their brain glucose metabolism was measured with positron emission tomography during conditions in which the body was satiated in terms of insulin signalling. Brain responses to pictures of foods were measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging.

The research is funded by the Academy of Finland, Turku University Hospital, University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University and Aalto University.

The results were published on January 27th, 2012 in scientific journal PLoS ONE.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Suomen Akatemia (Academy of Finland). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Lauri Nummenmaa, Jussi Hirvonen, Jarna C. Hannukainen, Heidi Immonen, Markus M. Lindroos, Paulina Salminen, Pirjo Nuutila. Dorsal Striatum and Its Limbic Connectivity Mediate Abnormal Anticipatory Reward Processing in Obesity. PLoS ONE, 2012; 7 (2): e31089 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031089

Cite This Page:

Suomen Akatemia (Academy of Finland). "Obesity is associated with altered brain function." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120209131452.htm>.
Suomen Akatemia (Academy of Finland). (2012, February 9). Obesity is associated with altered brain function. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120209131452.htm
Suomen Akatemia (Academy of Finland). "Obesity is associated with altered brain function." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120209131452.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) — Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) — Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) — At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — The Center for Science in the Public Interest released its 2014 list of single meals with whopping calorie counts. 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