Guided by the notion that late onset chronic diseases are the consequence of prolonged overworking of various tissues that have genetic and epigenetic vulnerabilities, I assert that it is the cellular energy metabolism of the different tissues that determines their health and longevity and consequently that of the entire organism. Based on my previous and ongoing work, I hypothesize that a small set of neurons in the hypothalamus, which produce Agouti-related protein (AgRP), act as the master regulator of energy utilization by all tissues, and hence, these hypothalamic neurons determine healthy tissue function and longevity. We will selectively up- or down-regulate the activity of hypothalamic AgRP neurons and test the effect of these perturbations on normal physiology of peripheral tissues and that of the brain. I suggest that these changes in peripheral tissue function by altered AgRP neuronal functioning will have critical impact on higher brain functions as well, including learning and memory and the ability of the brain to withstand stress during neurodegeneration induced either by normal aging or by pathological processes, such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. This project is uniquely suited for the NDPA program because it is unconventional and represents an approach in biomedical research that is nonexistent. It is a high risk avenue, but, if successful, would have great benefits in that it could immediately lead to novel treatments for various chronic diseases. Public Health Relevance: Late onset chronic diseases, such as dementias, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, diabetes, cardiovascular disorders and tissue malignancies, are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the U.S., creating the greatest emotional and financial burden on the individual and society. As the size of the aging population continues to grow, late onset chronic diseases are predicted to further dominate the attention of biomedicine and society at large. This pr

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Type
NIH Director’s Pioneer Award (NDPA) (DP1)
Project #
8DP1DK098058-03
Application #
8307818
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZGM1-NDPA-B (01))
Program Officer
Hyde, James F
Project Start
2010-09-30
Project End
2015-07-31
Budget Start
2012-08-01
Budget End
2013-07-31
Support Year
3
Fiscal Year
2012
Total Cost
$821,907
Indirect Cost
$326,907
Name
Yale University
Department
Veterinary Sciences
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
043207562
City
New Haven
State
CT
Country
United States
Zip Code
06520
Vogt, Merly C; Paeger, Lars; Hess, Simon et al. (2014) Neonatal insulin action impairs hypothalamic neurocircuit formation in response to maternal high-fat feeding. Cell 156:495-509
Seli, Emre; Babayev, Elnur; Collins, Stephen C et al. (2014) Minireview: Metabolism of female reproduction: regulatory mechanisms and clinical implications. Mol Endocrinol 28:790-804
Kim, Jae Geun; Suyama, Shigetomo; Koch, Marco et al. (2014) Leptin signaling in astrocytes regulates hypothalamic neuronal circuits and feeding. Nat Neurosci 17:908-10
Ruan, Hai-Bin; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Liu, Zhong-Wu et al. (2014) O-GlcNAc transferase enables AgRP neurons to suppress browning of white fat. Cell 159:306-17
Matarese, Giuseppe; Procaccini, Claudio; Menale, Ciro et al. (2013) Hunger-promoting hypothalamic neurons modulate effector and regulatory T-cell responses. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 110:6193-8
Dietrich, Marcelo O; Horvath, Tamas L (2013) Hypothalamic control of energy balance: insights into the role of synaptic plasticity. Trends Neurosci 36:65-73
Thaler, Joshua P; Yi, Chun-Xia; Schur, Ellen A et al. (2012) Obesity is associated with hypothalamic injury in rodents and humans. J Clin Invest 122:153-62
Coupe, Berengere; Ishii, Yuko; Dietrich, Marcelo O et al. (2012) Loss of autophagy in pro-opiomelanocortin neurons perturbs axon growth and causes metabolic dysregulation. Cell Metab 15:247-55