Edited by: Steve Bunk

Richard D. Palmiter
Jay C. Erickson, Kathy E. Clegg, Richard D. Palmiter, "Sensitivity to leptin and susceptibility to seizures of mice lacking neuropeptide Y," Nature, 381:415-8, 1996. (Cited in more than 205 papers since publication)

Comments by Richard D. Palmiter , Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator and University of Washington biochemistry professor

Ah, for an ideal scientific world. In it, researchers demonstrate that injection of a specific neuropeptide into the brain stimulates feeding. So they develop a drug that blocks this peptide's activity. People take the drug, eat less, obesity is swept off its substantial feet, and the marketplace comes running.

But in the real world, that particular transmitter, called neuropeptide Y (NPY), is not so cooperative. Yes, it does stimulate feeding when injected into the brain, but what happens if NPY is deleted from mice? They'll stop feeding without the need of a...

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