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Correlations between Hippocampal Neurogenesis and Metabolic Indices in Adult Nonhuman Primates

DOI: 10.1155/2011/875307

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Increased neurogenesis in feeding centers of the murine hypothalamus is associated with weight loss in diet-induced obese rodents (Kokoeva et al., 2005 and Matrisciano et al., 2010), but this relationship has not been examined in other species. Postmortem hippocampal neurogenesis rates and premortem metabolic parameters were statistically analyzed in 8 chow-fed colony-reared adult bonnet macaques. Dentate gyrus neurogenesis, reflected by the immature neuronal marker, doublecortin (DCX), and expression of the antiapoptotic gene factor, B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2), but not the precursor proliferation mitotic marker, Ki67, was inversely correlated with body weight and crown-rump length. DCX and BCL-2 each correlated positively with blood glucose level and lipid ratio (total cholesterol/high-density lipoprotein). This study demonstrates that markers of dentate gyrus neuroplasticity correlate with metabolic parameters in primates. 1. Introduction The hippocampus is receiving increasing attention for its potential role in energy regulation [1]. The hippocampus is part of a neural circuit involved with reward and energy regulation [2] and is sensitive to satiety signals associated with learning and memory [3]. Recent findings indicate that palatable high-fat diets promote excessive food intake and weight gain and interfere with hippocampal functioning. This is supported by epidemiological data linking diets high in saturated fat with weight gain and memory deficits [4–6]. Furthermore, rats and humans with diabetes mellitus show age-related performance impairments on memory tasks [7]. More recent studies demonstrate that high-fat diet-induced maternal obesity impairs offspring hippocampal BDNF production [8], alters fetal hippocampal development [9], and reduces hippocampal neurogenesis during the early life of their offspring [10]. Moreover, adult male rats fed with a high-fat diet show impaired hippocampal neurogenesis [11]. Neurogenesis induced by ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) or brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in feeding centers of the murine hypothalamus is associated with weight loss in obese rodents [12, 13]. Because both hippocampal neurogenesis and proxy metabolic parameters are connected with stress and mood disorders [14–16], the aforementioned hypothalamic data raise important questions regarding the relationship between hippocampal neurogenesis and the regulation of peripheral metabolic parameters. We present a pilot study of the relationship between hippocampal neurogenesis and metabolic parameters in adult nonhuman primates. 2.

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