José Donato Junior, PhD

Research area: Neurophysiology of leptin and the central regulation of food intake

Brief description: Leptin is a key hormone for the proper control of food intake and energy balance through its action on specific populations of neurons that express the leptin receptor. However, under certain physiological conditions, such as obesity, aging and pregnancy, these neurons exhibit decreased sensitivity to leptin, characterizing a state of leptin resistance. The experiments in our laboratory are aimed at improving our understanding of the interrelationship between obesity and leptin resistance. At the moment, we are interested in investigating how changes in intracellular signaling of the leptin receptor, as well as the formation of projections of hypothalamic neurons, may predispose to obesity. For this purpose, we have available a repertoire of genetically modified strains of mice, in combination with neuroanatomical, histological and molecular biology methods to study the neurophysiology of leptin and the central regulation of food intake.

Phone: 55-11-3091-7216 – Room: 234 – Laboratory of Functional Neuroanatomy