Send to

Choose Destination
Int Rev Cytol. 2003;224:1-27.

Distribution, function, and properties of leptin receptors in the brain.

Author information

Department of Anatomy, Showa University School of Medicine, Tokyo 142-8555, Japan.


Leptin, a peptide hormone, is implicated in the modulation of food intake and maintenance of energy balance in many vertebrates including humans. It is considered to act via its receptor mainly through several hypothalamic nuclei that play critical roles in the regulation of appetite. This article looks mainly at the functional significance of leptin in rat brain by drawing on published reports of morphological and physiological analyses. Our immunohistochemical observations indicate that the leptin receptor is distributed throughout the brain, including the hypothalamus, and interestingly, is found in the hippocampus and neocortex. Physiological experiments with single living cells isolated from fresh rat hypothalamus clearly demonstrate that leptin has a significant effect on feeding-regulating neurons in the hypothalamus. Studies to date support a role for leptin not only in modulating food intake and appetite in rats and humans, but also in relation to learning and memory processes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center