Experts discover how nicotine keeps weight off
June 10, 2011
A group of scientists at Yale University discovered by chance that nicotine stimulates a group of neurons that suppresses appetite.
The scientists published in the journal ‘Science’, “Nicotine stimulates a group of neurons in the brain region called the hypothalamus, which are responsible for notifying the body that already had enough and are happy.”
Professor Marina Picciotto said, “Unfortunately, smoking helps to prevent weight gain.” “We want to help people maintain their weight once they quit, and may help non-smokers who are struggling with obesity.”
She further explained that the discovered was fortuitous, when they were analyzing the effect of a potential drug for depression that acts on a group of receptors on the surface of neurons.
These receptors, called nicotinic receptors, have many functions. One of these is being the target of nicotine in the brain. When testing the experimental drug in mice, scientists noticed that the treated animals ate less than those not receiving the drug.”