Navigation Links
Leptin action in the brain linked to sepsis survival

CINCINNATIThe hormone leptin, typically associated with body weight regulation, works within the central nervous system (CNS) to aid the immune system's defense against sepsis, researchers say.

Sepsis is a life-threatening medical condition in which the entire body is overwhelmed by infection.

A study led by Matthias Tschp, MD, of UC's Metabolic Diseases Institute, and Charles Caldwell, PhD, of UC's surgery department, is the first to describe leptin's role in the control of immune response via the CNS. Results are published this week in the Journal of Neuroscience, the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience.

"Indirect evidence has previously indicated that the central nervous system might have a role in maintaining the immune system," says Tschp. "For example, people with brain injuries appear to be at a higher risk for infection and sepsis. Sepsis is also a serious complication for stroke patients. What was lacking was any molecular mechanism to explain that relationship."

Researchers know that obesity causes an overproduction of leptin. High leptin levels make receptors "deaf" to the hormone, resulting in a loss of leptin function (leptin resistance) that leads to higher food intake.

Diet-induced induced obese mice have a survival advantage in sepsis. Because of this, the team hypothesized that leptin resistance, which is seen at neurons regulating body weight, may not be happening at the brain centers that regulate the immune system.

To prove this, the team studied several leptin-deficient mouse models, including one that was missing leptin receptors everywhere except within the CNS. They report that leptin, long thought to act directly on immune cells themselves, also mediates actions in the CNS. They showed that leptin replacement improved the host response to a standard model of sepsis.

Leptin-dependent neurocircuitry, the authors say, is required for a proper immune response to sepsis, and damage to this circuitry, or even leptin deficiency, may lead to higher risk of death from sepsis.

"Human congenital leptin deficiency is rare," the authors say, "with less than a few dozen patients reported worldwide to date. But there is a stunning number of recorded cases of death due to sepsis in this patient population."

In addition, Tschp says, this new finding gives researchers clues that could help in developing therapeutic targets for treating infection in people with damaged leptin-dependent neurocircuitry.


Contact: Dama Kimmon
University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center

Related biology news :

1. Joslin researchers uncover potential role of leptin in diabetes
2. Leptins long-distance call to the pancreas
3. Facial attraction -- choice of sexual partner shaped the human face
4. Interaction of just 2 genes governs coloration patterns in mice
5. Hidden interactions between predators and prey: evolution causes cryptic dynamics in ecology
6. Voice Biometrics Gains Traction as Most Accurate and Convenient Technology to Secure Customer Privacy
7. Skin oil -- ozone interactions worsen air quality in airplanes
8. Gray whales a fraction of historic levels, genetic research says
9. Keck Foundation funds study of biological interactions with nanomaterials
10. Neuronal conduction of excitation without action potentials based on ceramide production
11. Majority of Americans want local action on global warming, says poll
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/18/2015)...  As new scientific discoveries deepen our understanding of ... providers face challenges in better using that knowledge to ... as more children continue to survive pediatric cancer, that ... age. John M. Maris, M.D ., a ... (CHOP) . --> John M. Maris, ...
(Date:11/17/2015)... , November 17, 2015 Paris ... 2015.   --> Paris from 17 ... DERMALOG, the biometrics innovation leader, has invented the first ... fingerprints on the same scanning surface. Until now two different ... Now one scanner can capture both on the same ...
(Date:11/17/2015)... , Nov. 17, 2015  Vigilant Solutions announces ... joined its Board of Directors. --> ... after recently retiring from the partnership at TPG Capital, ... companies with over $140 Billion in revenue.  He founded ... across all the TPG companies, from 1997 to 2013.  ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... 2015  Twist Bioscience, a company focused on ... Twist Bioscience chief executive officer, will present at ... 1, 2015 at 3:10 p.m. Eastern Time at The Lotte ... --> --> About ... is on Twitter. Sign up to follow our ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... -- Capricor Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CAPR ... and commercialization of first-in-class therapeutics, today announced that ... to present at the 2015 Piper Jaffray Healthcare Conference ... The Lotte New York Palace Hotel in ... --> . --> ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015 According to two new studies, fewer ... is something that many doctors, scientists, and public health experts ... with fewer PSA tests being done, will there be more ... Dr. David Samadi, "Despite the efforts made in regards ... second leading cancer cause of death in men, killing approximately ...
(Date:11/23/2015)... ... November 23, 2015 , ... Noblis, Inc., a leading provider of science, technology, ... National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA), has joined the Noblis NSP team as President of ... the intelligence community and the private sector,” said L. Roger Mason, Jr., Ph.D. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: