Whole-brain patterns of the presynaptic inputs and axonal projections of BDNF neurons in the paraventricular nucleus.


Undergraduate Program and School of Life Science and Technology, ShanghaiTech University, Shanghai, 201210, China. Electronic address: [Email]


Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a crucial role in human obesity. Yet, the neural circuitry supporting the BDNF-mediated control of energy homeostasis remains largely undefined. To map key regions that might provide inputs to or receive inputs from the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) BDNF neurons, a key type of cells in regulating feeding and thermogenesis, we used rabies virus-based transsynaptic labeling and adeno-associated virus based anterograde tracing techniques to reveal their whole-brain distributions. We found that dozens of brain regions provide dense inputs to or receive dense inputs from PVN BDNF neurons, including several known weight control regions and several novel regions that might be functionally important for the BDNF-mediated regulation of energy homeostasis. Interestingly, several regions show very dense reciprocal connections with PVN BDNF neurons, including the lateral septum, the preoptic area, the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus, the paraventricular thalamic nucleus, the zona incerta, the lateral parabrachial nucleus, the subiculum, the raphe magnus nucleus, and the raphe pallidus nucleus. These strong anatomical connections might be indicative of important functional connections. Therefore, we provide an outline of potential neural circuitry mediated by PVN BDNF neurons, which might be helpful to resolve the complex obesity network.


BDNF,Feeding,Obesity,Thermogenesis,Transsynaptic tracing,