Scientists discover a hunger & # 39; switchboard & # 39; in the brain – and may soon be your appetite & # 39; to & # 39; or & # 39; from & # 39; put
- Researchers from the University of Arizona discovered a complex network of brain regions that communicate to tell us when we are hungry or saturated
- They discovered they could use chemicals to disable the neuron signals that tell anorexia mice that they don't want food
- One day the scientists say they can do the opposite and eliminate the desire to eat too much in obese people
Scientists have discovered the brain area that they think is a control center to tell us whether we are hungry or not.
Manipulating activity in this part of the brain can enable physicians to help patients restore their appetite if they are sick or anorexia or have an appetite & # 39; switch for people who eat too much.
University of Arizona researchers discovered that part of the brain emotionally center, the amygdala, calls the shots over our appetite.
Although they have made their discovery in mice, the scientists believe that one day they'll be able to & # 39; turn off & # 39; that suppress appetite to help people with anorexia eat and they & # 39; to & # 39; to help obese people to control their appetite.
Food for the brain: scientists have discovered a group of neurons in the emotional center of mouse brains that they can turn off or & # 39; on & # 39; able to control appetite, their research suggests
Food is such a basic activity, often – in one form or another – for all organisms, and yet there is so much that we are still learning about appetite, metabolism and weight differences.
And how food is disrupted is a complex interaction between how our brains absorb sensory information and how our digestive systems process food.
An estimated 70 million people around the world suffer from one or more eating disorders.
Disordered food includes overeating, malnutrition and bulimia and, although it is more frequently diagnosed in women, affects all sexes.
Even those who do not have a diagnosed eating disorder can certainly have an eating problem or an unhealthy relationship with food.
Although genetic and environmental factors play a role, overeating is considered a major cause of obesity.
An area in the brain called the hypothalamus secretes hormones that help regulate basic needs such as our hunger, thirst and need for sleep.
But we also eat emotionally, and the University of Arizona scientists wanted to find the part of the brain that controls our emotional desires and whether it can be used to moderate eating habits.
Certain illnesses, treatments, and conditions can also make people eat less, so the scientists began investigating neural circuits in anorexia mice.
They discovered that many brain regions & # 39; s talk to each other & # 39; s & # 39; to communicate or stop the appetite, but one set of neurons in the amygdala, the emotional center of the brain, seemed to orchestrate all that communication.
If they & # 39; turn off the neurons for suppressing the appetite & # 39 ;, the anorexia animals would get hungry.
& # 39; By silencing the neurons within the circuit, we can effectively block food depression caused by inflammation to make patients eat more, & # 39 ;, Dr. Haijing Cai explains, says co-author and neuroscientist of the University of Arizona.
& # 39; We used anorexia for simplification, but for obese people we can activate those neurons to help them eat less.
& # 39; That is the potential impact of this type of research. & # 39;
Using a technique known as chemogenetic silencing, they can prevent non-invasively preventing these neurons from improperly firing to tell anorexia animals (or perhaps humans) that they are full.
But in the same way, they could use similar chemicals to ignite these neurons, putting the brakes on food's desire to block overeating.
Although it was performed on mice, the researchers plan to show the same hunger and appetite paths in the human mind and believe that they are able to target them to help people increase or curb their appetite.
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