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The brain in bone and fuel metabolism


Obesity and osteoporosis have become major public health challenges worldwide. The brain is well established as a pivotal regulator of energy homeostasis, appetite and fuel metabolism. However, there is now clear evidence for regulation between the brain and bone. Similarly, evidence also indicates that the involvement of the brain in bone and adipose regulation is both related and interdependent. The hypothalamus, with its semi-permeable blood brain barrier, is one of the most powerful regulatory regions within the body, integrating and relaying signals not only from peripheral tissues but also from within the brain itself. Two main neuronal populations within the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus regulate energy homeostasis: The orexigenic, appetite-stimulating neurons that co-express neuropeptide Y and agouti-related peptide and the anorexigenic, appetite-suppressing neurons that co-express proopiomelanocortin and cocaine- and amphetamine related transcript. From within the arcuate, these four neuropeptides encompass some of the most powerful control of energy homeostasis in the entire body. Moreover, they also regulate skeletal homeostasis, identifying a co-ordination network linking the processes of bone and energy homeostasis. Excitingly, the number of central neuropeptides and neural factors known to regulate bone and energy homeostasis continues to grow, with cannabinoid receptors and semaphorins also involved in bone homeostasis. These neuronal pathways represent a growing area of research that is identifying novel regulatory axes between the brain and the bone, and links with other homeostatic networks; thereby revealing a far more complex, and interdependent bone biology than previously envisioned. This review examines the current understanding of the central regulation of bone and energy metabolism.

Type Journal
ISBN 1873-2763 (Electronic) 1873-2763 (Linking)
Authors Wee, N. K. ; Kulkarni, R. N. ; Horsnell, H. ; Baldock, P. A.;
Responsible Garvan Author (missing name)
Publisher Name BONE
Published Date 2016-01-01
Published Volume 82
Published Pages 56-63
Status Published in-print
URL link to publisher's version
OpenAccess link to author's accepted manuscript version