Genetic and pharmacological studies have shown that the central melanocortin system plays a critical role in the regulation of energy homeostasis. Animals and humans with defects in the central melanocortin system display a characteristic melanocortin obesity phenotype typified by increased adiposity, hyperphagia, metabolic defects and increased linear growth. In addition to interacting with long-term regulators of energy homeostasis such as leptin, more recent data suggest that the central melanocortin system also responds to gut-released peptides involved in mediating satiety. In this review, we discuss the interactions between these systems, with particular emphasis on cholecystokinin (CCK), ghrelin and PYY3-36.
- Food intake