The vagus nerve and the inflammatory reflex--linking immunity and metabolism.

Author: Pavlov VA1, Tracey KJ
Author Information:
1Center for Biomedical Science, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, 350 Community Drive, Manhasset, NY 11030, USA.
Conference/Journal: Nat Rev Endocrinol.
Date published: 2012 Dec
Other: Volume ID: 8 , Issue ID: 12 , Pages: 743-54 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1038/nrendo.2012.189. , Word Count: 96

The vagus nerve has an important role in regulation of metabolic homeostasis, and efferent vagus nerve-mediated cholinergic signalling controls immune function and proinflammatory responses via the inflammatory reflex. Dysregulation of metabolism and immune function in obesity are associated with chronic inflammation, a critical step in the pathogenesis of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Cholinergic mechanisms within the inflammatory reflex have, in the past 2 years, been implicated in attenuating obesity-related inflammation and metabolic complications. This knowledge has led to the exploration of novel therapeutic approaches in the treatment of obesity-related disorders.

PMID: 23169440 PMCID: PMC4082307 DOI: 10.1038/nrendo.2012.189