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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 5856071, 10 pages
Review Article

Current Evidence for a Role of Neuropeptides in the Regulation of Autophagy

1Department for Innovation in Biological, Agro-Food and Forest Systems (DIBAF), Università degli Studi della Tuscia, Viterbo, Italy
2Unit of Clinical Pharmacology, University Hospital “Luigi Sacco”-ASST Fatebenefratelli Sacco, Milano, Italy
3Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences “Luigi Sacco” (DIBIC), Università degli Studi di Milano, Milano, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Davide Cervia; ti.sutinu@aivrec.d

Received 12 December 2016; Accepted 30 April 2017; Published 16 May 2017

Academic Editor: Eiichi Kumamoto

Copyright © 2017 Elisabetta Catalani et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Neuropeptides drive a wide diversity of biological actions and mediate multiple regulatory functions involving all organ systems. They modulate intercellular signalling in the central and peripheral nervous systems as well as the cross talk among nervous and endocrine systems. Indeed, neuropeptides can function as peptide hormones regulating physiological homeostasis (e.g., cognition, blood pressure, feeding behaviour, water balance, glucose metabolism, pain, and response to stress), neuroprotection, and immunomodulation. We aim here to describe the recent advances on the role exerted by neuropeptides in the control of autophagy and its molecular mechanisms since increasing evidence indicates that dysregulation of autophagic process is related to different pathological conditions, including neurodegeneration, metabolic disorders, and cancer.