06 December 2017

Um mice eat and don't get fat

Revealed a way to eat and lose weight


Biologists at Washington University in St. Louis (USA) have found a way to prevent weight gain even when eating fatty foods. The researchers activated special metabolic pathways in mouse cells. The scientists' article was published in the journal eLife (Hedgehog signaling via Gli2 prevents obesity induced by high-fat diet in adult mice), excerpts from it are published in a press release on the Medicalexpress website.

The researchers bred genetically modified mice with overexpression (increased activity) of the Hedgehog (Hh) — ΔNGli2 and SmoM2 genes. These genes are involved in the development and maintenance of homeostasis of various tissues, including those formed by fat cells (adipocytes). The results of experiments with Drosophila fruit flies have shown that Hh activation suppresses the growth and reproduction of adipocytes.

The animals were modified so that Hh genes could be activated when mice stopped using the antibiotic doxycycline (Dox), which scientists have been adding to drinking water since the birth of rodents. Two-month-old rodents for 16 weeks were fed food with a high content of fatty acids. At the same time, in one group of animals, designated as –Dox, the antibiotic was removed from drinking water, and the other (+Dox) continued to experience the effects of doxycycline.

After eight weeks of the experiment, the Dox mice had smaller body sizes and fat deposits than the rodents from the other group. The level of accumulation of both brown and white fat decreased, the size of adipocytes decreased.

A picture from the Washington University School of Medicine press release
Obesity prevented in mice fed high-fat diet – VM.

The results of molecular analysis showed that the activity of genes associated with the growth and reproduction of adipocytes also decreased. At the same time, insulin sensitivity increased in animals, which is a factor that prevents the development of diabetes.

According to scientists, they have shown that the same metabolic pathway is present in mammalian cells, which in the future can be affected with the help of pharmaceuticals. Thus, a person will not suffer from obesity, even if his diet consists of food with a high fat content.

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