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IF halts development but hungry cells jump-start growth

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A study done on brain development in tadpoles showed that limited food restriction (< 9 days) halts brain development but the development catches up when food becomes available.  Clearly not tested in the experiment is whether this applies to humans and to adults.  It does make me wonder if intermittent fasting would have similar effects in people who are trying it.

Starvation halts brain development, but hungry cells jump-start growth when food becomes available



Surprisingly, if tadpoles were able to access food within about nine days, neural progenitor cells in the brain started dividing again and the tadpoles caught up to the growth state where they would have been if food had always been available.

even without providing the tadpoles with any food, their brains could be relaunched into growth mode by activating the insulin receptor that sits on the surface of neuronal progenitor cells

By carefully tracking the neural progenitor cells over time, McKeown also discovered that they were poised to divide as soon as the nutrient signals reached them. This meant the cells had halted their progression when they were right on the verge of dividing. This is typically seen in cells under stress, and clearly starvation is a type of stress.

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