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What scientist have Discovered About Estrogen and Physical Activity
27 Jan' 21

What scientist have Discovered About Estrogen and Physical Activity

 

 

In a recent study, intriguing concerns about how hormones influence the brain and motivate the body to move were raised.

According to a surprising new study in mice that looked at DNA, hormones, and brain cells, estrogen may influence brain activity in ways that could affect how physically active humans are. Using current technology to target and alter specific genes and neurons in living animals, the researchers discovered that surges of oestrogen triggered pathways in the mouse brain that led the animals even males to become more active. 

The study, which was recently published, employed mice. Despite the fact that humans and mice share many hormones, genes, and neurons, scientists are still unsure if our brains and physiological systems work in the same manner. 


Despite the fact that humans and mice share many hormones, genes, and neurons, scientists are still unsure if our brains and physiological systems work in the same manner.

  

Mating and movement  

  

Scientists have known for more than a century, since a landmark 1924 study involving rats, those female mammals are most physically active right before they ovulate, when they are most fertile. Female animals are likely to be on the lookout for a mate at that time, thus this behaviour makes evolutionary sense. Scientists have suggested that oestrogen may have a part in this activity in the decades since, with research revealing that female lab animals' daily skittering closely tracks their oestrogen levels. 


But how does oestrogen, which plays a big role in ovulation and other reproductive activities, affect physical activity? A scientist with a long-standing scientific interest in women's physiology and the metabolism was recently drawn to that physiological enigma. She and her colleagues wondered if estrogen could influence brain genetic activity, causing brain cells to activate in ways that could set in motion, well, motion itself.  

To test that theory, the researchers assembled a group of healthy adult female mice and chemically prevented estrogen intake in part of them, all while monitoring how much the animals moved. The animals without estrogen became substantially more sedentary than the other females very immediately, showing that estrogen affects physical activity.  

 

Also read The importance of womens wellness 

 

Locating the cells that move  

  

The researchers then looked at the activity of a variety of genes in the brains of the animals, finding that one, called When the animals' brains were soaked in estrogen, they eagerly pumped out more proteins, but when estrogen was removed, they went nearly silent. This gene, melanocortin-4, or Mc4r, has previously been linked to food intake and body weight management in humans. However, using high-tech genetic mapping techniques refined by one of the study's authors, the scientists now believe it could be the link between estrogen and the desire to be physically active.  

Estrogen binding to Mc4r genes in select neurons, particularly those in a portion of the mouse brain important in energy expenditure, was observed in real-time using these approaches. These brain cells also share connections with other neurons in the brain that regulate animal movement speed. When taken together, these findings reveal that estrogen activates a gene that activates certain brain cells, which then nudge an animal to move. However, because the researchers had yet to witness these genes and neurons in action, they utilized a sophisticated technique known as chemo genetics to directly activate the relevant neurons in female mice. When the Mc4r gene activity was increased by CRISPR, even male mice traveled more, though not as much as the peripatetic females. These findings emphasize the "complexity of physical activity behavior," and how every animal's readiness to spontaneously move — or not — is likely the consequence of a complex interplay between genetics, hormones, and neurology, as well as cognitive judgment. According to a professor of neuroscience and obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences, the "timing of exercise, to have the greatest positive influence for women, might be fine-tuned by considering the changing hormonal milieu," including the hormonal changes of menopause.  

  

"Of course, all of these findings in mice must be validated in humans," says, who was not involved in the present study. "However, because this mechanism was discovered in an ancient area of the brain, it is likely to apply to other mammals, including humans. 

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