The laboratory led by Ana Domingos researches on neuroimmune mechanisms underlying obesity. They discovered the sympathetic neuro-adipose junction, a functional synapse-like connection between white adipocytes and the sympathetic nervous system (Cell 2015).
Researchers also found that this neuro-adipose junction is necessary and sufficient for fat mass reduction via norepinephrine (NE) signaling (Cell 2015, Nature Comm 2017).
They then discovered Sympathetic neuron-Associated Macrophages (SAMs) that directly import and metabolize NE.
Abrogation of SAM function promotes long-term amelioration of obesity independently of food intake (Nature Medicine, 2017).