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Sci. STKE, 29 March 2005
Vol. 2005, Issue 277, p. pe15
[DOI: 10.1126/stke.2772005pe15]

PERSPECTIVES

Central and Peripheral Signaling Mechanisms Involved in Endocannabinoid Regulation of Feeding: A Perspective on the Munchies

Keith A. Sharkey* and Quentin J. Pittman

Hotchkiss Brain Institute and Institute of Infection, Inflammation and Immunity, Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 4N1.

Abstract: The endocannabinoid system is a critical regulator of energy homeostasis and food intake. Through cannabinoid (CB)1 receptors in the brain and periphery, endocannabinoids exert powerful effects on the systems of the body that coordinate the balance between food intake, metabolism, and energy expenditure. These integrative systems control food intake both by modulating the inputs to various brain areas that monitor energy balance and by increasing the hedonic or reward value of the food consumed. Cannabinoids also alter metabolism, acting through both centrally located CB1 receptors that drive neuronal pathways controlling metabolism and peripheral CB1 receptors located in tissues throughout the body.

*To whom correspondence should be addressed. Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Calgary, 3330 Hospital Drive NW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 4N1. E-mail: ksharkey{at}ucalgary.ca

Citation: K. A. Sharkey, Q. J. Pittman, Central and Peripheral Signaling Mechanisms Involved in Endocannabinoid Regulation of Feeding: A Perspective on the Munchies. Sci. STKE 2005, pe15 (2005).

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