Hormones, feeding and animal models

Published on November 30, 2015   32 min

Other Talks in the Series: Obesity: Science, Medicine and Society

Other Talks in the Series: Animal Models in Biomedical Research

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My name is Carel le Roux. I work in the Diabetes Complications Research Centre at the University College Dublin, I'm also affiliated with Imperial College London and the University of Gothenburg. And I'm going to discuss the importance of hormones in feeding and how we can use animal models to understand the epidemic of obesity.
My conflict of interests are shown here, and it is important to understand that we have to work as multidisciplinary teams between scientists, clinicians, and hospitals, but also working with industry because that's the only way we're going to be able to bring investigations as well as discoveries from the research bench into the clinical space as quickly as possible.
We see the hypothalamus, indicated here within the brain, being part of the subcortical regions within the brain. Now very often, we think that we can actually use talking therapies, for example, asking people to eat less food or do more exercise, but that doesn't work because it engages the outside of the brain or the so-called cortical areas. And of course, it is the subcortical areas, as indicated here as the hypothalamus, but also a little bit lateral, the medulla oblongata and the nucleus tractus solitarius that really determine how hungry we feel and how full we feel. Now these areas are very well-preserved, and the function of these areas are very-well preserved in mammals, and therefore we can use animal models to understand how these areas are working and how we can actually help patients to feel less hungry and when they eat to feel more full.