The Role of Glucose-Sensing Neurons in the Ventromedial Hypothalamus in Physiological Regulation of Glucose Homeostasis

  • Stanley, Sarah S. (PI)

Project Details


The brain plays a crucial role in controlling the level of blood glucose. Specialized sets of cells in a key area of the brain, the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH), change their activity as blood glucose changes. These cells, in turn, trigger a series of responses that return blood glucose to normal. Some cells are activated by high glucose and others by low glucose and they then signal to peripheral organs to change how the body uses or produces glucose. Although disruption in brain glucose sensors is potentially critical to the development of diabetes, we know little about which sets of cells trigger which response or how these glucose-responsive cells are connected to each other and to peripheral organs to control blood glucose. This proposal will use a distinctive set of strategies including new tools to assess the actions and connections of defined cells to address these gaps. Specifically this proposal will: 1. Assess how particular sets of glucose-sensing cells in the VMH act to control blood glucose to identify subsets of cells with defined actions. 2. Map the connections of VMH glucose-sensing cells within the brain and to peripheral organs to identify particular pathways with defined effects. 3. Identify markers for groups of glucose-sensing cells in the VMH to assess their specific roles in glucose regulation. These studies will provide the basis for generating targeted therapies that may enable regulation of blood glucose.
Effective start/end date1/07/1530/06/18


  • American Diabetes Association


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