Role of Flial Cells in the Arcuate Nucleus of the Hypothalamus in High-Fat Diet Consuming Mice


Hunter Samuel

Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2022



JAX Location

In: Student Reports, Summer 2022, The Jackson Laboratory


Obesity is a complex condition involving the progressive excess of body fat that increases the risk of further health concerns. Consumption of high-fat diet leads to spontaneous and persistent activation of AgRP neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARH). Previous study from the O’Connell lab has shown that diet intake converse to caloric intake, is most important in diet; and that a high-fat diet affects the inhibitory tone onto AGRP neurons (6). The inherent plasticity of the arcuate nucleus to food intake and metabolic need has also been previously defined (5). The purpose of this study is to examine the role of glial cells in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus during high-fat diet consumption to determine its relation to the hyperactivity of AGRP neurons. We can conclude that diet has an impact on astrocyte morphology and function in the hypothalamus both intracellularly and extracellularly. While genetic background plays a role in baseline reactivity, they all respond to the diet insult. Our results suggest a representative model of glial cell dysfunction in astrocytes that lead to neuronal changes experienced during high-fat diet consumption.

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