Why do we feel listless when we are recovering from an illness? The answer is, apparently, that low-grade chronic inflammation interferes with the dopaminergic signaling system in the brain that motivates us to do things.
This was reported in a new paper published in the journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences.
The research carried out at Emory University explains the links between the reduced release of dopamine in the brain, the motivation to do things, and the presence of an inflammatory reaction in the body. It also presents the possibility that this is part of the body’s effort to optimize its energy expenditure during such inflammatory episodes, citing evidence gathered during their study.
The authors also published an experimental framework based on computational tools, devised to test the theory.
The underlying hypothesis is that the body needs more energy to heal a wound or overcome an infection, for instance, both of which are associated with low-grade inflammation. To ensure that energy is available, the brain uses an adaptive technique to reduce the natural drive to perform other tasks which could potentially drain away the energy needed for healing. This is essentially a recalibration of the specialized reward neurons in the motivation center of the brain, so that ordinary tasks no longer feel like they’re worth doing.
According to the new study, the mechanism of this recalibration is immune-mediated disruption of the dopamine pathway, reducing dopamine release….
Large Pig Study Reveals Significant Inflammatory Response to Genetically Engineered Foods
- One of the best studies ever done to document the dangers of GM foods found that overall, inflammation levels were 2.6 times higher in GE-fed pigs than those fed a non-GE diet, and male pigs fared worse than the females
- Most pigs raised in the US are fed a genetically engineered (GE) diet; typically a mixture of GE soy and corn. Recent research shows that such a diet causes severe inflammation in the pig’s stomach
- While sows were 2.2 times more likely to have severe stomach inflammation on a GE diet, male pigs were four times more likely to get severe stomach inflammation
- The GE diet tested simulated that consumed by a typical American, who will be exposed to a variety of different GE crops through their daily diet, not just one specific one at a time
- Besides the hurdle of obtaining the GE seeds for testing, protected as they are by rigid patent laws, researchers who venture into GMO research must also be prepared to survive the personal and professional abuse…
Oxidative and Inflammatory Properties of Aluminum: Possible Relevance in Alzheimer’s Disease