Leptin and Cognitive Function

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


It is well established that the endocrine hormone leptin plays a pivotal role in regulating food intake and body weight via its hypothalamic actions. However, leptin receptors are widely expressed in the CNS, and evidence is growing that leptin regulates numerous central processes, including cognitive function. Several studies have shown that leptin-insensitive rodents display impaired hippocampal synaptic plasticity as well as deficits in spatial memory tasks. Recent cellular studies have also demonstrated that leptin has the ability to regulate diverse aspects of hippocampal synaptic function that are crucial for learning and memory processes including glutamate receptor trafficking, neuronal morphology, and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. Moreover, clinical studies have recently linked aberrant leptin function to neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer disease (AD). Characterization of leptin regulation of higher cognitive processes is providing valuable insights into the role of this hormone in health and disease.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMetabolic Syndrome and Neurological Disorders
EditorsTahira Farooqui, Akhlaq A. Farooqui
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781118395318
ISBN (Print)9781118395271
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Brain
  • Cognitive function
  • Hippocampal synaptic function
  • Leptin receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine
  • General Neuroscience


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