Neuropeptides and Energy Homeostasis

Research Interests

We focus on the transcriptional and translational control of brain pathways involved in the regulation of food intake and the development of diabetes and obesity. In particular, we address orexin receptor expression and signaling as well as the role of astrocytes in brain energy supply. Hypothalamic orexins regulate energy homeostasis, sleep, and the reward system. Currently, we characterize orexin receptor splice variants and their transcriptional regulation, intracellular transport and molecular interactions. In addition, we address the circadian regulation of orexin receptor expression and the transcriptional control of the OX2 receptor promoter. Astrocytes represent a major source for lactate in the brain that may serve as energy substrate for neurons. We study the expression and regulation of hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs) and their role in the regulation of the glycolytic capacity of astrocytes. Current projects involve the activation of HIFs in astrocytes by neuronal or endothelial factors.

International Collaborations

  • Luc Pellerin, Univ. Poitiers and CHU Poitiers, F-86021 Poitiers, France
  • Harpal Randeva, Metabolic & Vascular Health, University of Warwick Medical School, Coventry, UK