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Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2016 May 15;310(10):R906-16. doi: 10.1152/ajpregu.00243.2015. Epub 2016 Mar 2.

Hindbrain glucagon-like peptide-1 neurons track intake volume and contribute to injection stress-induced hypophagia in meal-entrained rats.

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Department of Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Department of Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Published research supports a role for central glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) signaling in suppressing food intake in rodent species. However, it is unclear whether GLP-1 neurons track food intake and contribute to satiety, and/or whether GLP-1 signaling contributes to stress-induced hypophagia. To examine whether GLP-1 neurons track intake volume, rats were trained to consume liquid diet (LD) for 1 h daily until baseline intake stabilized. On test day, schedule-fed rats consumed unrestricted or limited volumes of LD or unrestricted volumes of diluted (calorically matched to LD) or undiluted Ensure. Rats were perfused after the test meal, and brains processed for immunolocalization of cFos and GLP-1. The large majority of GLP-1 neurons expressed cFos in rats that consumed satiating volumes, regardless of diet type, with GLP-1 activation proportional to intake volume. Since GLP-1 signaling may limit intake only when such large proportions of GLP-1 neurons are activated, a second experiment examined the effect of central GLP-1 receptor (R) antagonism on 2 h intake in schedule-fed rats. Compared with baseline, intracerebroventricular vehicle (saline) suppressed Ensure intake by ∼11%. Conversely, intracerebroventricular injection of vehicle containing GLP-1R antagonist increased intake by ∼14% compared with baseline, partly due to larger second meals. We conclude that GLP-1 neural activation effectively tracks liquid diet intake, that intracerebroventricular injection suppresses intake, and that central GLP-1 signaling contributes to this hypophagic effect. GLP-1 signaling also may contribute to satiety after large volumes have been consumed, but this potential role is difficult to separate from a role in the hypophagic response to intracerebroventricular injection.


Exendin-3 (9–39), Ex9; cFos; meal patterns

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