ISSN 1470-3947 (print) | ISSN 1479-6848 (online)

Endocrine Abstracts (2008) 16 S12.2

Peptide YY: cure for obesity?

Rachel Batterham

University College London, London, UK.

Exogenous administration of the gut hormone peptide YY3-36 (PYY3-36) reduces food intake in obese humans and rodents. New lines of evidence support a role for endogenous PYY3-36 in regulating energy homeostasis. The NPY-Y2 receptor mediates the anorectic actions of PYY3-36 with rodent studies implicating the hypothalamus, vagus and brainstem as key target sites. Functional imaging in humans has confirmed that PYY3-36 activates brainstem and hypothalamic regions. The greatest effects, however, were observed within the orbitofrontal cortex, a brain region involved in reward processing. Further evidence for a hedonic role for PYY3-36 is supported by rodent studies showing that PYY3-36 decreases the motivation to seek high-fat food. These emerging hedonic effects of PYY3-36 together with the weight-reducing effects observed in obese rodents suggest that targeting the peptide YY system may offer a therapeutic strategy for obesity.

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