Binge easting disorder affects approximately 5% of adults in the US. Left unchecked, this disorder leads to health complications, including obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. The cause of this disease is poorly understood and treatment options are limited. A new study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation suggests that estrogen replacement may limit binge-eating behaviors. Using a mouse binge-eating model, Yong Xu and colleagues at Baylor School of Medicine found that estradiol suppressed binge eating behaviors. This effect required the presence of estrogen receptors in serotonin neurons, and direct delivery of an estrogen conjugate to serotonin neurons reduced binge eating in these animals. Additionally, activation of estrogen receptors with the drug propylpyrazole triol suppressed binge eating. Together, these results suggest that targeting estrogen receptors should be further explored as a strategy to inhibit binge eating.
Estrogens stimulate serotonin neurons to inhibit binge-like eating in mice
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