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The central role of melatonin receptors on food intake, energy balance and leptin pathway

Grant number: 17/01882-8
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): June 08, 2017
Effective date (End): June 07, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology
Principal Investigator:José Cipolla Neto
Grantee:Daniella Do Carmo Buonfiglio
Supervisor abroad: Gianluca Tosini
Home Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo, SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), United States  
Associated to the scholarship:15/26190-6 - Melatonin central role in food control and energy metabolism: interaction of melatonin and leptin, BP.PD


Many hormones and neurotransmitters regulate feeding behavior. Leptin is in the spotlight since mutations in the genes encoding this hormone or its receptor resulted in severe obesity. Melatonin (Mel) is involved in the regulation of energy balance and its administration reduces food intake, body weight and abdominal fat in rodent models. In vitro, rhythmic Mel treatment synchronizes leptin secretion by adipocytes. Melatonin is essential for coupling metabolic functions to light-dark cycle ensuring metabolic homeostasis. The uncoupling of these functions is related to metabolic syndrome and obesity. However, the mechanism through which Mel modulates body weight is unclear. We aim to investigate the feeding behavior, body weight changes and alterations on the leptin pathway in the CNS of mice lacking MT1 or MT2 receptors. For this Male C3H/f+/+MT1/, C3Hf+/+MT2/ and Wild type (WT) mice at the age of 2 months will have food intake and body weight measured daily. Then, they will be submitted to Acute Leptin sensitivity test, to 24-hour fasting response, to 24-hour HFD response, pSTAT3 activation in response to leptin and monitored at CLAMS system. To indirectly evaluate the heat production, brown adipose tissue from mice models will be collected and the protein expression of UCP1 will be analyzed by Western blot.