“Hunger” neurons in the brain are regulated by protein activated during fasting

New study sheds light on control mechanisms for neurons involved in hunger, obesity and anorexiaDendritic spines, structures that are important for neurotransmission, jut out of an AgRP neuron (image courtesy Dong Kong) Boston (July 6, 2016) – Neurons in the brain that control hunger are regulated by AMPK, a protein activated during fasting, report researchers from Tufts University School of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School in Neuron on July 6, 2016. High AMPK activity levels significantly increase the firing of “hunger” neurons known as AgRP neurons, leading to greater food intake, body weight and fat mass in mouse models. Blocking AMPK activity in mice led to reduced hunger and AgRP neuron firing, even after fasting. The research team found that AMPK alters the ability of…


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