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Influence of dietary precursors intake on rats feeding behavior and anxiety status

Grant number: 12/02802-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2012
Effective date (End): June 30, 2013
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Pharmacology - Neuropsychopharmacology
Principal Investigator:Vânia D'Almeida
Grantee:Luana Cristina de Almeida Silva
Home Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The homeostasis energy of the body depends on the balance of food intake and energy expenditure that, in turn, are influenced by multiple factors, whether genetic, metabolic, endocrine, neural, behavioral and environmental. All these factors can be involved in the pathogenesis of obesity. The Central Nervous System (CNS) controls the intake and energy expenditure through a complex network of neurotransmitters and neuromodulators, among these mediators we may include serotonin and endocannabinoids that act on specific areas of the mesolimbic system may regulating the food intake and the energy spending. Chemical evidences suggest that these two systems can synergistically modulate feeding behavior. The levels and the possible functions of several neurotransmitters are influenced by the stock of their dietary precursors. The tryptophan is the only precursor of serotonin, responsible for inducing the serotonin activity in the brain. Polyunsaturated fatty acids from long chain such as linoleic acid are seen as precursors of the main endogenous agonists of cannabinoid receptors. Therefore, the effects of these precursors may be sufficient to influence the behavior in some circumstances, and the administration of dietary components such as tryptophan and linoleic acid, a way to partially amend the metabolism of neurotransmitters, or therapeutic procedures in experiments with animals and humans. The objective of this paper is to analyze the influence of dietary intake of precursors related to serotonin and endocannabinoids on feeding and anxiety behavior, and fos protein expression in raphe nucleus to serotonin and hipotalamic nuclei related to endocannabinoids and CB1 receptor of mice. (AU)