Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Gene therapy shows early promise for treating obesity

11.03.2009
With obesity reaching epidemic levels, researchers at the Ohio State University Medical Center are studying a potentially long-term treatment that involves injecting a gene directly into one of the critical feeding and weight control centers of the brain.

"Obesity significantly increases the risk for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke and some cancers," says Dr. Matthew During, senior author and professor in Ohio State Medical Center's department of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics.

"Our findings represent a promising new treatment for obesity that could ultimately provide a much safer and more effective approach than some conventional therapies."

Scientists have discovered that a particular gene, BDNF, can result in improved insulin sensitivity, reduced fat mass and weight loss when active in the hypothalamus. The findings are published online in the journal Nature Medicine.

According to first author Lei Cao, assistant professor in the department of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics, the study involved injecting the BDNF gene in normal mice, diabetic mice and mice fed with a high fat diet, to determine how the gene transfer would affect their weight. "The gene was active in the overweight mice, but as they lost weight the gene expression was essentially 'dialed down,' using a novel RNA interference approach, thus stopping the weight from continuing to decrease and allowing a stable target weight to be reached," she says.

During indicated that with the initial results showing great promise, the next step is to obtain the necessary FDA approvals to begin studying the therapy in humans at OSU Medical Center and other centers around the country.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of U.S. adults, or 72 million people, and 16 percent of U.S. children are obese. Since 1980, obesity rates for adults have doubled and rates for children have tripled.

Approximately 24 million U.S. children and adults, nearly eight percent of the population, have diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association. An estimated 18 million people have been diagnosed with the disease, but nearly six million people are unaware that they have diabetes.

Doug Flowers | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osumc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Spread of deadly eye cancer halted in cells and animals
13.11.2018 | Johns Hopkins Medicine

nachricht Breakthrough in understanding how deadly pneumococcus avoids immune defenses
13.11.2018 | University of Liverpool

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

Im Focus: Research icebreaker Polarstern begins the Antarctic season

What does it look like below the ice shelf of the calved massive iceberg A68?

On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.

Im Focus: Penn engineers develop ultrathin, ultralight 'nanocardboard'

When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure

Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...

Im Focus: Coping with errors in the quantum age

Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly

The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

European Space Talks: Weltraumschrott – eine Gefahr für die Gesellschaft?

23.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

The dawn of a new era for genebanks - molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Fish recognize their prey by electric colors

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Ultrasound Connects

13.11.2018 | Awards Funding

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>