Enzyme Blocker Could Fight Obesity By Boosting "Good Fat"
the MPR take:
Researchers at McMaster University have identified a lesser-known peripheral serotonin that may inhibit brown adipose tissue (also known as “brown fat”) that helps to burn calories. The findings, published in the journal Nature Medicine, describe this type of serotonin that comprises the majority of serotonin in the body and is produced by the enzyme tryptophan hydroxylase (Tph1). When the McMaster team genetically inhibited or removed this enzyme, mice that were fed a high-fat diet were protected from obesity, fatty liver disease, and prediabetes; this was due to an enhanced ability of the brown fat to burn more calories. Serotonin linked to the brain and central nervous system (the remaining 5% of serotonin in the body) was not impacted by the altering of the enzyme. Next steps for the researchers include development of a pharmacological “enzyme blocker” for the treatment of obesity and its comorbidities.
The majority of serotonin in the body is produced by tryptophan hydroxylase (Tph1). The McMaster team found that when they genetically removed or inhibited this enzyme that makes serotonin that mice fed a high-fat diet were protected from obesity, fatty liver disease and pre-diabetes due to an enhanced ability of the brown fat to burn more calories.
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