Study: Brain triggers hunger during fasts

Jan 04, 2007

A series of events in the human brain apparently stimulate hunger during periods of fasting, researchers at the Yale University School of Medicine said.

The study, published in the January issue of Cell Metabolism, found the events in the brain make sure a person stays hungry when food is scarce, HealthDay News said. Researchers said thyroid hormone in the brain is linked to increases in the protein UCP2, setting off a chain reaction that ultimately boosts the neurons that drive hunger.

The researchers studied mice on a 24-hour fast. Researchers found there was an increase in the enzyme that stimulates thyroid hormone production in concert with increased UCP2 protein activity.

The study examined the protein and its effects on the activity of neurons, lead researcher Sabrinia Diano said. "It's how neurons 'learn' that food is missing, and it keeps them ready to eat when food is introduced."

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Investigators show how immune cells are 'educated' not to attack beneficial bacteria

Related Stories

United States, China team explore energy harvesting

7 hours ago

Six authors have described their work in harvesting energy in a paper titled "Ultrathin, Rollable, Paper-Based Triboelectric Nanogenerator for Acoustic Energy Harvesting and Self-Powered Sound Recording." ...

China's struggle for water security

9 hours ago

Way back in 1999, before he became China's prime minister, Wen Jiabao warned that water scarcity posed one of the greatest threats to the "survival of the nation".

Canada revises upward CO2 emission data since 1990

9 hours ago

Canada revised its greenhouse gas emission data from 1990 to 2013 in a report Friday, showing it had higher carbon dioxide discharges each year, and a doubling of emissions from its oil sands.

Fish found in suspected tsunami debris boat quarantined

19 hours ago

The wreckage of a fishing boat that appears to be debris from the 2011 Japanese tsunami was carrying some unexpected passengers—fish from Japanese waters—when it was spotted off the Oregon coast.

Recommended for you

Fat signals control energy levels in the brain

Apr 23, 2015

An enzyme secreted by the body's fat tissue controls energy levels in the brain, according to new research at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The findings, in mice, underscore a role ...

Human tape worm drug shows promise against MRSA in lab

Apr 23, 2015

A new study provides evidence from lab experiments that a drug already used in people to fight tapeworms might also prove effective against strains of the superbug MRSA, which kills thousands of people a ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.