Monitoring in vivo neural activity to understand gut-brain signaling

Author: Amber L Alhadeff1,2
1 Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
2 Department of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
Conference/Journal: Endocrinology
Date published: 2021 Feb 9
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1210/endocr/bqab029. , Word Count: 142

Appropriate food intake requires exquisite coordination between the gut and the brain. Indeed, it has long been known that gastrointestinal signals communicate with the brain to promote or inhibit feeding behavior. Recent advances in the ability to monitor and manipulate neural activity in awake, behaving rodents has facilitated important discoveries about how gut signaling influences neural activity and feeding behavior. This review emphasizes recent studies that have advanced our knowledge of gut-brain signaling and food intake control, with a focus on how gut signaling influences in vivo neural activity in animal models. Moving forward, dissecting the complex pathways and circuits that transmit nutritive signals from the gut to the brain will reveal fundamental principles of energy balance, ultimately enabling new treatment strategies for diseases rooted in body weight control.

Keywords: calcium imaging; dopamine; gut-brain; hindbrain; hypothalamus; vagus nerve.

PMID: 33558881 DOI: 10.1210/endocr/bqab029