Researchers have found that a high fat diet causes sprout new brain cells in a brain area that regulates appetite seems.

Interestingly, if the researchers stopped the growth of these new brain cells, mice caught less weight and kept more active, even eat the same high fat diet.

"I really do not understand the function of these neurons in normal brain," said study researcher Seth Blackshaw, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. "Our data suggest that these neurons may have an important role in the regulation of feeding."

The cells are located in a part of the brain called the median eminence, which is located at the edge, outside the blood-brain barrier (which keeps the toxic substances out of the brain), but which extends deep into the hypothalamus.

Because the median eminence is in contact with areas of the brain outside the blood-brain barrier, researchers believe they can act as a detector of chemical substances in the blood and report as are the rest of the body the hypothalamus, which can makes decisions about food.

If this connection is confirmed in humans, could become a potential target for therapy control with diet, as it is situated outside the blood-brain barrier.