Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Nutritional genomics identifies a potential weight-loss resistance gene

08.12.2005


Friedman School of Tufts: Nutrition notes



Two obese people follow the same low-calorie diet and do not exercise, but one loses much more weight than the other. Genetic factors may explain this phenomenon, according to José Ordovas, PhD, director of the Nutrition and Genomics Laboratory at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) at Tufts University. In a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Ordovas and colleagues identified a variation in the perilipin gene that appears to render some people resistant to weight loss from calorie restriction. This research builds on their earlier work on perilipin and obesity.

"It is as if the connection between calorie intake and body weight is interrupted," explains Ordovas, who is also a professor at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts. "Carriers of this gene variant appear to have more stable mechanisms for controlling their body weight," Ordovas says. "In people that have become obese, this leads to a blunting of the weight-loss effect we would expect to see with calorie restriction."


Andrew Greenberg, MD, director of the Obesity and Metabolism Laboratory at the USDA Center at Tufts, one of the scientists who discovered perilipin, notes that in an earlier study this same gene variant was linked with a lower risk of obesity, but in this study, it was associated with weight loss resistance.

"It may make sense," Greenberg says, "if we consider that this perilipin gene variant induces a sort of buffer against changes in how the body burns and stores food energy. It appears to protect against weight gain in lean women, while preventing weight loss in men and women who have become obese."

The clinical study was led by Dolores Corella, PhD, of the Genetic and Molecular Epidemiology Unit, University of Valencia, in Spain, who is a visiting scientist at the HNRCA and a long-term collaborator with Ordovas. These investigators studied 48 severely obese men and women who were following a low-calorie diet for one year. Subjects, who did have the more common variants of the perilipin gene lost an average of approximately 20 pounds during the study period. In contrast, carriers of the variant gene did not experience significant weight changes.

The researchers determined that the difference in weight loss between the two groups could not be explained by the fact that the variant gene carriers weighed less at the start of the study. When asked why the subjects had not lost more weight, Ordovas noted, "These subjects were closely followed during the study period and the compliance was considered to be excellent regardless of the perilipin genotype. Given the difficulty of keeping weight off long-term, the loss of 20 pounds is a significant achievement."

The perilipin gene controls the production of perilipin, a protein that regulates the release of fat from cells. The Tufts researchers’ earlier study linking two variations in the perilipin gene to a lower risk of obesity in women was described in a Friedman Nutrition Note released earlier this year, entitled, "Genetics Research Unlocks a Key Regulator of Weight in Women."

Ordovas cautions, "First of all, it is very important to point out that both of these studies were conducted on the same general ethnic population in Spain. We do not know what we might find in other countries or ethnic groups. And secondly," he adds, "nutritional genomics is not yet in a position to contribute significantly to treatment of obese patients. But we are finally beginning to piece together how genetics might be used in the future, perhaps to help predict who is likely to respond well to dietary weight-loss interventions."

Siobhan Gallagher | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.tufts.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells
22.08.2017 | National University Health System

nachricht Biochemical 'fingerprints' reveal diabetes progression
22.08.2017 | Umea University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>