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Diabetes. 2002 Dec;51(12):3420-7.

Y2 receptor deletion attenuates the type 2 diabetic syndrome of ob/ob mice.

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  • 1Neurobiology Program, Garvan Institute of Medical Research, St. Vincent's Hospital, 384 Victoria Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010, Sydney, Australia.


Hypothalamic neuropeptide Y (NPY) is implicated in the regulation of a variety of physiological functions, notably energy homeostasis and reproduction. Chronically elevated NPY levels in the hypothalamus, as in genetically obese ob/ob mice, are associated with obesity, a syndrome of type 2 diabetes, and infertility. However, it is not known which of the five cloned Y receptors mediate these effects. Here, we show that crossing the Y2 receptor knockout mouse (Y2(-/-)) onto the ob/ob background attenuates the increased adiposity, hyperinsulinemia, hyperglycemia, and increased hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity of ob/ob mice. Compared with lean controls, ob/ob mice had elevated expression of NPY and agouti-related protein (AgRP) mRNA in the arcuate nucleus and decreased expression of proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) mRNA. Y2 deletion in ob/ob mice significantly increased the hypothalamic POMC mRNA expression, with no effect on NPY, AgRP, or CART expression. [Y2(-/-)ob/ob] mice were no different from ob/ob littermates with respect to food intake and body weight, and Y2 receptor deficiency had no beneficial effect on the infertility or the reduced hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadotropic function of ob/ob mice. These data demonstrate that Y2 receptors mediate the obese type 2 diabetes phenotype of ob/ob mice, possibly via alterations in melanocortin tonus in the arcuate nucleus and/or effects on the HPA axis.

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