Mitochondrial Dynamics and Hypothalamic Regulation of Metabolism

Endocrinology. 2018 Oct 1;159(10):3596-3604. doi: 10.1210/en.2018-00667.


Mitochondria are cellular organelles that play an important role in bioenergetic processes. In the central nervous system, high energy-demanding neurons are critically dependent on mitochondria to fulfill their appropriate functions. The hypothalamus is a key brain area for maintaining glucose and energy homeostasis via the ability of hypothalamic neurons to sense, integrate, and respond to numerous metabolic signals. Mitochondrial function has emerged as an important component in the regulation of hypothalamic neurons controlling glucose and energy homeostasis. Although the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood, emerging evidence indicates that mitochondrial dysfunction in hypothalamic neurons may contribute to the development of various metabolic diseases, including obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). In this review, we summarize recent studies demonstrating the link between mitochondria and hypothalamic neural control of glucose and energy homeostasis. Finally, this review provides an insight to understand how mitochondria in hypothalamic neurons may contribute to the development of metabolic disorders, such as T2DM and obesity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Hypothalamus / metabolism*
  • Metabolic Diseases / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Mitochondrial Dynamics*
  • Neurons / metabolism


  • Glucose