Friday, June 9, 2017
A flip switch for binge-eating.
A flip switch for binge-eating.Researchers have identified a subgroup of neurons in the mouse brain that, upon activation, immediately prompt binge-like eating. The repeated stimulation of these neurons over time caused the mice to gain weight. The zona incerta (ZI) is a relatively understudied part of the brain.Intriguingly, patients receiving deep brain stimulation of the subthalamus, which includes the ZI, for the treatment of movement disorders can exhibit characteristics of binge eating. The researchers found that stimulating ZI GABA neurons with axons extending into the paraventricular thalamus (PVT) prompted immediate binge-like eating, just two to three seconds after stimulation. Within ten minutes of continuous ZI GABA stimulation, mice rapidly consumed 35% of their daily high-fat food store, meant to be eaten over a 24-hour period. continue