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Outils personnels

Département de biologie

UE Energy homeostasis

Responsables : Claude Duchamp et Gilles Mithieux

6 crédits ECTS, 36h de cours, 6h de TD





The course will provide a deep insight into the physiological regulation of energy homeostasis in health and diseases. The homeostatic control of energy balance corresponds to the coordinated regulation of food intake (energy inflow) and energy expenditure (energy outflow) on the basis of several central and peripheral signals. The understanding of these homeostatic mechanisms should lead to 1) effective treatments for the control of metabolic disorders such as obesity or diabetes, 2) a better comprehension of the capacity of organisms to cope with environmental constraints or to build contrasted ecological strategies. The brain, particularly the hypothalamus, plays a central role in regulating energy homeostasis by modulating hunger and energy expenditure in response to a number of neuronal, endocrine and biochemical signals originating from various tissues. Understanding these complex processes requires an integrated vision of the physiological processes involved.

The course will provide a high-quality and a comprehensive coverage of several recently discovered molecular pathways and integrative processes involved in the control of energy homeostasis, obesity, eating disorders and adaptations to environmental constraints. Topics will cover basic, fundamental and translational research by bringing together academic research scientists, clinicians and private research scientists.

Students will thus have the opportunity to discuss with the scientists that made breakthroughs in the physiological regulation of energy homeostasis.


Topics will cover

  • physiology of glucose and energy homeostasis
  • mitochondrial and cellular plasticity and bioenergetics
  • endocrine and biochemical modulation of energy balance
  • importance of nutrient sensing
  • contribution of the digestive tract and microbiota
  • contribution of the different types of adipose tissue
  • contribution of the liver and skeletal muscles
  • Inter-organ communications, periphery to brain neural signaling
  • integrative processes in the hypothalamus
  • importance of neuronal plasticity in central regulation of energy balance
  • contribution of the reward circuits and endocannabinoids in energy balance
  • thermoregulation and energy homeostasis, adaptations to ecological constraints
  • Comparative & integrated approaches, from molecular to ecological levels - lessons from various biological models
  • From normal nutrition to complex behavioral or metabolic pathologies
  • pharmacological modulation of energy balance and new therapeutic developments


Learning Prerequisites

Fundamentals of physiology


Assessment methods

Oral student presentation and participation to the round table discussions as well as a final written exam


Objectives and skills

  • knowledge on physiological regulations of energy homeostasis
  • knowledge on inter-organ communication and signaling
  • knowledge on central control of energy balance
  • knowledge on nutrient and body energy reserve sensing
  • knowledge on control of glycaemia in health and diabetes
  • comprehensive view on the links between normal regulation to metabolic pathologies
  • understanding of methodological approaches to study biological processes at different integration levels
  • capacity to understand and discuss scientific research and concepts in energy homeostasis


Calendrier et programme ici