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Obesogenic diet and inflammatory process in the brainstem and its interaction with the autonomic nervous system and the arterial pressure

Grant number: 11/13563-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2012
Effective date (End): February 29, 2016
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology - Physiology of Organs and Systems
Principal Investigator:Vagner Roberto Antunes
Grantee:Laiali Jurdi El Chaar
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:09/15354-7 - Role of adipose tissue in the development of obesity and associated co-morbidities: investigation of molecular mechanism and search for alternative therapies, AP.JP


Obesity has reached epidemic proportions globally and it is a major risk factor for other diseases including diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disorders, especially hypertension. Although several studies in this area, little is known about the mechanisms by which the excessive accumulation of fat results in hypertension. There are several experimental evidences linking obesity with sympathetic overactivity to different territories of the body, a phenotype that could be involved in the genesis and maintenance of hypertension associated with obesity. Obesity is generally characterized by a low-intensity chronic inflammation that occurs not only systemically but also centrally, for example in the hypothalamus, an important region involved in the control of autonomic outflow and blood pressure. Moreover, there is evidence in the literature showing that activation of proinflammatory pathways at the hypothalamic level caused by high fat diet may be directly associated with hypertension. However, there is no evidence that high fats diet could affect similarly the neuronal integration of autonomic nuclei of the brainstem, thereby altering the sympathetic activity and blood pressure levels associated with obesity. Thus, in this project, we will investigate the hypothesis that, similarly to the hypothalamus, the induction of obesity by high-fat diet rich in saturated fatty acids is associated with an inflammatory process at the brainstem nuclei level that control blood pressure and sympathetic outflow.

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
CHAAR, LAIALI J.; COELHO, ALINE; SILVA, NATALIA M.; FESTUCCIA, WILLIAM L.; ANTUNES, VAGNER R.. High-fat diet-induced hypertension and autonomic imbalance are associated with an upregulation of CART in the dorsomedial hypothalamus of mice. PHYSIOLOGICAL REPORTS, v. 4, n. 11, . (13/06206-0, 11/13563-8, 09/15354-7, 10/19018-9, 15/19530-5)
Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
CHAAR, Laiali Jurdi El. High blood pressure and autonomic dysfunction induced by high-fat diet: role of CART and inflammatory factors in central autonomic network.. 2016. Doctoral Thesis - Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB/SDI) São Paulo.

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