The control of water-intake behavior is critical for life because an excessive water intake induces pathological conditions, such as hyponatremia or water intoxication. However, the brain mechanisms controlling water intake currently remain unclear. We previously reported that thirst-driving neurons (water neurons) in the subfornical organ (SFO) are cholecystokinin (CCK)-dependently suppressed by GABAergic interneurons under Na-depleted conditions. We herein show that CCK-producing excitatory neurons in the SFO stimulate the activity of GABAergic interneurons via CCK-B receptors. Fluorescence-microscopic Ca2+ imaging demonstrates two distinct subpopulations in CCK-positive neurons in the SFO, which are persistently activated under hyponatremic conditions or transiently activated in response to water drinking, respectively. Optical and chemogenetic silencings of the respective types of CCK-positive neurons both significantly increase water intake under water-repleted conditions. The present study thus reveals CCK-mediated neural mechanisms in the central nervous system for the control of water-intake behaviors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)