Liver can play key role in controlling weight gain

   Apr 21, 5:25 pm

Washington, April 21 (ANI): Researchers from the University of Melbourne and Austin Health have discovered that liver can directly talk to the brain to control the amount of food we eat.

The results have demonstrated that the liver, which has never been classed as an important organ in controlling body weight before, is in fact a major player and should be considered a target for treatment of weight gain.

Test on mice showed that over-expression of a specific enzyme in the liver resulted in 50percent less fat and the subjects ate less food than mice without the extra enzyme.

Needed in the production of glucose, the enzyme called FBPase previously led to speculation that too much FBPase was bad for you.

"We actually thought that the mouse with the over-expressed enzyme would show signs of becoming diabetic since the enzyme is important in producing more glucose from the liver. However when we studied our mice in more depth, we were very surprised to see that this enzyme triggered a number of hormones that influence the control of appetite," said Dr Barbara Fam from the University's Molecular Obesity Laboratory group at Austin Health.

Dr Fam conducted the study with Associate Professor Sof Andrikopoulos.

"The really striking result was that the genes in the brain, important in making us increase our food intake were actually reduced," she noted .

"The results suggest that consumption of a diet high in fat, causes an increase in liver FBPase that was likely put in place as a negative feedback mechanism to limit further weight gain. Importantly, FBPase does not function to control body weight under normal physiological circumstances but acts only when the system is exposed to excess nutrients such as fat.

"When people eat diets loaded with fat and sugars particularly over the long term, it can have a number of different effects on the body but it appears that we actually have in place an innate system that protects us from any further weight gain that could happen while eating these type of diets," she added.

More needs to be investigated to verify this in further trials, however this study has demonstrated that liver FBPase should be viewed not only as a mediator of glucose metabolism but also as an important regulator of appetite and fat. It also gives us great insight into why the liver is a very important organ.

The study will be published in the Journal "Diabetes". (ANI)

LIGO may detect formation of black-hole binary stars: Study Jun 26, 3:19 pm
Washington, D.C., June 26 (ANI): Researchers from the University of Chicago have predicted that Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) would detect approximately 1,000 mergers of massive black holes annually once it achieves full sensitivity early next decade.
Full Story
Driverless cars pose 'safety dilemma' Jun 26, 7:08 am
Washington D.C, Jun 26 (ANI): Would you buy a car that might risk your life to save a pedestrian? That's the question researchers are mulling in a recent study about driverless cars.
Full Story
Scientists have new theory on how 'climate' affects 'violence' Jun 25, 8:37 am
Washington D.C, Jun 25 (ANI): Scientists have long struggled to explain why cool heads won't be able to prevail in a hotter world and now, a team of researchers has come up with a model that could help explain why.
Full Story
Dinosaur-era bugs knew how to camouflage Jun 25, 8:00 am
Washington D.C, Jun 25 (ANI): It turns out, insects have been perfecting the art of disguise for a hundred million years.
Full Story
Comments