Delineating a serotonin 1B receptor circuit for appetite suppression in mice

Li Li, Steven C. Wyler, Luis A. León-Mercado, Baijie Xu, Youjin Oh, Swati, Xiameng Chen, Rong Wan, Amanda G. Arnold, Lin Jia, Guanlin Wang, Katherine Nautiyal, René Hen, Jong Woo Sohn, Chen Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Triptans are a class of commonly prescribed antimigraine drugs. Here, we report a previously unrecognized role for them to suppress appetite in mice. In particular, frovatriptan treatment reduces food intake and body weight in diet-induced obese mice. Moreover, the anorectic effect depends on the serotonin (5-HT) 1B receptor (Htr1b). By ablating Htr1b in four different brain regions, we demonstrate that Htr1b engages in spatiotemporally segregated neural pathways to regulate postnatal growth and food intake. Moreover, Htr1b in AgRP neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARH) contributes to the hypophagic effects of HTR1B agonists. To further study the anorexigenic Htr1b circuit, we generated Htr1b-Cre mice. We find that ARH Htr1b neurons bidirectionally regulate food intake in vivo. Furthermore, single-nucleus RNA sequencing analyses revealed that Htr1b marks a subset of AgRP neurons. Finally, we used an intersectional approach to specifically target these neurons (Htr1bAgRP neurons). We show that they regulate food intake, in part, through a Htr1bAgRP→PVH circuit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere20212307
JournalJournal of Experimental Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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