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Special Issue "Glial Cells and Energy Intake: A Field That Is Gaining Weight"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Neurobiology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Jean-Denis Troadec
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratoire de Neurosciences Cognitives, Aix-Marseille Université, Marseille, France
Interests: Obesity; neuroinflammation; Neuro-glia interaction; astrocytes; tanycytes; brainstem; food contaminants
Dr. Bruno Lebrun
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratoire de Neurosciences Cognitives, Aix-Marseille Université, Marseille, France
Interests: astrocytes; tanycytes; food intake; obesity; leptin

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Maintaining a stable body weight is a daily challenge. The worldwide ever-increasing proportion of people suffering from a nutritional imbalance points to the need for a better understanding of the mechanisms regulating energy balance. The control of body weight is complex and involves numerous factors controlling both the intake and expenditure sides of the energy balance equation. The brain contributes to the control of the energy balance by integrating information linked to nutritional status and arising from peripheral organs. So far, most research on this field has focused on neuronal signalling while the role of glial cells was poorly explored. Our view of glial cells has evolved considerably over the last decades and these cells are now recognized as partners of neurons in contributing to brain functioning. Emerging evidence also suggest a significant role for glia (astrocytes, tanycytes and microglia) in the control of energy balance. This Special Issue will be devoted to the recent advances in the role of glial cells in the regulation of energy balance, with a special emphasis on glial plasticity, transports of nutrients, neurotransmitters and hormones, glial receptors expression and responsiveness to metabolic signal, gliotransmitters release. Original research articles or review are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Jean-Denis Troadec
Dr. Bruno Lebrun
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Astrocytes
  • Tanycytes
  • Microglia
  • Hypothalamus
  • Brainstem
  • Physiology
  • Physiopathology
  • Obesity
  • Hormones
  • Gliotransmitters
  • Neuroinflammation

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Review

Open AccessReview
Mapping of Microglial Brain Region, Sex and Age Heterogeneity in Obesity
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(6), 3141; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22063141 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 403
Abstract
The prevalence of obesity has increased rapidly in recent years and has put a huge burden on healthcare worldwide. Obesity is associated with an increased risk for many comorbidities, such as cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes and hypertension. The hypothalamus is a key [...] Read more.
The prevalence of obesity has increased rapidly in recent years and has put a huge burden on healthcare worldwide. Obesity is associated with an increased risk for many comorbidities, such as cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes and hypertension. The hypothalamus is a key brain region involved in the regulation of food intake and energy expenditure. Research on experimental animals has shown neuronal loss, as well as microglial activation in the hypothalamus, due to dietary-induced obesity. Microglia, the resident immune cells in the brain, are responsible for maintaining the brain homeostasis and, thus, providing an optimal environment for neuronal function. Interestingly, in obesity, microglial cells not only get activated in the hypothalamus but in other brain regions as well. Obesity is also highly associated with changes in hippocampal function, which could ultimately result in cognitive decline and dementia. Moreover, changes have also been reported in the striatum and cortex. Microglial heterogeneity is still poorly understood, not only in the context of brain region but, also, age and sex. This review will provide an overview of the currently available data on the phenotypic differences of microglial innate immunity in obesity, dependent on brain region, sex and age. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Glial Cells and Energy Intake: A Field That Is Gaining Weight)
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Open AccessReview
Norepinephrine Regulation of Ventromedial Hypothalamic Nucleus Astrocyte Glycogen Metabolism
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(2), 759; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22020759 - 13 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 587
Abstract
The catecholamine norepinephrine (NE) links hindbrain metabolic-sensory neurons with key glucostatic control structures in the brain, including the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMN). In the brain, the glycogen reserve is maintained within the astrocyte cell compartment as an alternative energy source to blood-derived glucose. [...] Read more.
The catecholamine norepinephrine (NE) links hindbrain metabolic-sensory neurons with key glucostatic control structures in the brain, including the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMN). In the brain, the glycogen reserve is maintained within the astrocyte cell compartment as an alternative energy source to blood-derived glucose. VMN astrocytes are direct targets for metabolic stimulus-driven noradrenergic signaling due to their adrenergic receptor expression (AR). The current review discusses recent affirmative evidence that neuro-metabolic stability in the VMN may be shaped by NE influence on astrocyte glycogen metabolism and glycogen-derived substrate fuel supply. Noradrenergic modulation of estrogen receptor (ER) control of VMN glycogen phosphorylase (GP) isoform expression supports the interaction of catecholamine and estradiol signals in shaping the physiological stimulus-specific control of astrocyte glycogen mobilization. Sex-dimorphic NE control of glycogen synthase and GP brain versus muscle type proteins may be due, in part, to the dissimilar noradrenergic governance of astrocyte AR and ER variant profiles in males versus females. Forthcoming advances in the understanding of the molecular mechanistic framework for catecholamine stimulus integration with other regulatory inputs to VMN astrocytes will undoubtedly reveal useful new molecular targets in each sex for glycogen mediated defense of neuronal metabolic equilibrium during neuro-glucopenia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Glial Cells and Energy Intake: A Field That Is Gaining Weight)
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