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Giamal N. LUHESHI"Obesity and the immune response to infection: a role for leptin ?"

Abstract :

The research focus of our laboratory is investigating the interactions between the peripheral immune system, and brain mechanisms regulating sickness responses to systemic inflammation.
In particular we are interested in the role of the immune mediators cytokines and more recently adipokines such as the appetite regulating peptide leptin. The work on adipokines in particular has led us to explore the link between the energy status of an individual and their ability to mount an immune response to pathogens. This work involves using models of food deprivation and diet induced obesity as a way of regulating some of the peptides of interest by using physiological as opposed to pharmacological interventions.
In parallel to this work we have in addition applied our expertise to studying the effects of the maternal immune system activated by pathogenic inflammatory stimuli during critical stages of gestation on the normal development of the fetal brain. This work was based on the rationale that dysegulation of the mothers immune response, known to occur during pregnancy, can result in developmental defects of the fetal brain, leading to brain disorders such as schizophrenia in the adult off-spring. 

Selected publications

Inoue W & Luheshi GN. (2011). Acute starvation alters lipopolysaccharide-induced fever in leptin-dependent and -independent mechanisms in rats. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2010 Dec;299(6):R1709-19.
Rummel, C., Inoue, W., Poole, S. & Luheshi, G.N. (2010). Leptin regulates leukocyte recruitment into the brain following systemic LPS-induced inflammation. Molec. Psychiatry. 15(5):523-34.
Pohl J, Woodside, B, & Luheshi, GN. (2009). Changes in hypothalamically mediated acute phase inflammatory responses to lipopolysaccharide in diet-induced obese rats. Endocrinology. 150(11):4901-10.
Rummel, S, Inoue, W, Sachot, S, Poole, S, Hubschle, T & Luheshi, GN. (2008). Selective contribution of IL-6 and leptin to brain inflammatory signals induced by systemic LPS injection in mice. J. Comparative Neurology. 511(3):373-95.

Scientific focus :

Giamal N. Luheshi s'est joint à l'Institut Douglas en janvier 2000 avec plusieurs objectifs de recherche en tête dont celui d'étudier les mécanismes d'action de la lL-1 cervicale en réponse à l'infection générale, à l'inflammation ou aux blessures, et celui d'examiner le rôle des cytokines dans le développement et la progression de la maladie mentale. Dans son troisième domaine de recherche principal, Giamal N. Luheshi continue d'approfondir ses récentes découvertes fortement significatives qui démontrent pour la première fois une association entre les niveaux de la IL-1 dans le cerveau et l'hormone supprimant l'appétit : la leptine. 

Sophie Layé directrice de l'Unité NutriNeuro INRA