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Science 304 (5667): 63-64

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

The Fat-Brain Axis Enters a New Dimension

Joel K. Elmquist and Jeffrey S. Flier

Leptin is a hormone produced by fat cells that reduces food intake in humans and rodents by regulating the activity of neurons in the hypothalamus, including those in the arcuate nucleus. In their Perspective, Elmquist and Flier discuss exciting new research (Pinto et al.; Bouret et al.) showing that leptin directly affects the activity and synaptic input of arcuate neurons and also stimulates their growth during development.

The authors are in the Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02215, USA. E-mail: jflier{at}

Circadian intervention of obesity development via resting-stage feeding manipulation or oxytocin treatment.
G. Zhang and D. Cai (2011)
Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 301, E1004-E1012
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
Defective Hypothalamic Autophagy Directs the Central Pathogenesis of Obesity via the I{kappa}B Kinase {beta} (IKK{beta})/NF-{kappa}B Pathway.
Q. Meng and D. Cai (2011)
J. Biol. Chem. 286, 32324-32332
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
A sensitive period for environmental regulation of eating behavior and leptin sensitivity.
M. Mainardi, G. Scabia, T. Vottari, F. Santini, A. Pinchera, L. Maffei, T. Pizzorusso, and M. Maffei (2010)
PNAS 107, 16673-16678
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
Cord Blood Leptin and Adiponectin as Predictors of Adiposity in Children at 3 Years of Age: A Prospective Cohort Study.
C. S. Mantzoros, S. L. Rifas-Shiman, C. J. Williams, J. L. Fargnoli, T. Kelesidis, and M. W. Gillman (2009)
Pediatrics 123, 682-689
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
Association of Adiposity Status and Changes in Early to Mid-Adulthood With Incidence of Alzheimer's Disease.
M. A. Beydoun, A. Lhotsky, Y. Wang, G. D. Forno, Y. An, E. J. Metter, L. Ferrucci, R. O'Brien, and A. B. Zonderman (2008)
Am. J. Epidemiol. 168, 1179-1189
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
Programmed Alterations in Hypothalamic Neuronal Orexigenic Responses to Ghrelin Following Gestational Nutrient Restriction.
Yousheng Jia, T. Nguyen, M. Desai, and M. G. Ross (2008)
Reproductive Sciences 15, 702-709
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Leptin inhibits swallowing in rats.
B. Felix, A. Jean, and C. Roman (2006)
Am J Physiol Regulatory Integrative Comp Physiol 291, R657-R663
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »
Early origins of obesity: programming the appetite regulatory system.
I. C. McMillen, C. L. Adam, and B. S. Muhlhausler (2005)
J. Physiol. 565, 9-17
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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
   Abstract »    Full Text »    PDF »

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