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Science 304 (5667): 110-115

Copyright © 2004 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Rapid Rewiring of Arcuate Nucleus Feeding Circuits by Leptin

Shirly Pinto,1* Aaron G. Roseberry,1* Hongyan Liu,1* Sabrina Diano,3 Marya Shanabrough,3 Xiaoli Cai,1,2 Jeffrey M. Friedman,1,2{dagger} Tamas L. Horvath3,4{dagger}

Abstract: The fat-derived hormone leptin regulates energy balance in part by modulating the activity of neuropeptide Y and proopiomelanocortin neurons in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus. To study the intrinsic activity of these neurons and their responses to leptin, we generated mice that express distinct green fluorescent proteins in these two neuronal types. Leptin-deficient (ob/ob) mice differed from wild-type mice in the numbers of excitatory and inhibitory synapses and postsynaptic currents onto neuropeptide Y and proopiomelanocortin neurons. When leptin was delivered systemically to ob/ob mice, the synaptic density rapidly normalized, an effect detectable within 6 hours, several hours before leptin's effect on food intake. These data suggest that leptin-mediated plasticity in the ob/ob hypothalamus may underlie some of the hormone's behavioral effects.

1 Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA.
2 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA.
3 Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.
4 Department of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.

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* These authors contributed equally to this work.

{dagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: friedj{at} (J.M.F.); tamas.horvath{at} (T.L.H.)

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Nutritional Epigenomics of Metabolic Syndrome: New Perspective Against the Epidemic.
C. Gallou-Kabani and C. Junien (2005)
Diabetes 54, 1899-1906
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Plasma leptin and ghrelin in the neonatal rat: interaction of dexamethasone and hypoxia.
E. D Bruder, L. Jacobson, and H. Raff (2005)
J. Endocrinol. 185, 477-484
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Use of Laser-Capture Microdissection for the Identification of Marker Genes for the Ventromedial Hypothalamic Nucleus.
J. P. Segal, N. R. Stallings, C. E. Lee, L. Zhao, N. Socci, A. Viale, T. M. Harris, M. B. Soares, G. Childs, J. K. Elmquist, et al. (2005)
J. Neurosci. 25, 4181-4188
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Activity-dependent Regulation of Synapse and Dendritic Spine Morphology in Developing Barrel Cortex Requires Phospholipase C-{beta}1 Signalling.
T. L. Spires, Z. Molnar, P. C. Kind, P. M. Cordery, A. L. Upton, C. Blakemore, and A. J. Hannan (2005)
Cereb Cortex 15, 385-393
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Hypothalamic hormones a.k.a. hypothalamic releasing factors.
R. Guillemin (2005)
J. Endocrinol. 184, 11-28
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Common Structural Basis for Constitutive Activity of the Ghrelin Receptor Family.
B. Holst, N. D. Holliday, A. Bach, C. E. Elling, H. M. Cox, and T. W. Schwartz (2004)
J. Biol. Chem. 279, 53806-53817
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A New ATP-Sensitive K+ Channel-Independent Mechanism Is Involved in Glucose-Excited Neurons of Mouse Arcuate Nucleus.
X. Fioramonti, A. Lorsignol, A. Taupignon, and L. Penicaud (2004)
Diabetes 53, 2767-2775
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NEUROSCIENCE: The Fat-Brain Axis Enters a New Dimension.
J. K. Elmquist and J. S. Flier (2004)
Science 304, 63-64
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