U.S. scientists have identified a sirtuin protein involved in fat cell production and metabolism that might lead to new obesity and diabetes treatments.
Joslin Diabetes Center researchers led by Dr. Ronald Kahn, chief of the center's section on obesity and hormone action, named the protein Sirt2 and sought to determine what changes in metabolism would occur if Sirt2 levels were changed.
When a person gains weight, cells in connective tissue differentiate and fill with fat, forming adipocytes, which are able to store fat. But too much fat storage leads to obesity and obesity-related diseases, including type 2 diabetes.
The Joslin researchers discovered increasing Sirt2 levels blocks a cell's ability to undergo differentiation and store fat, while reducing Sirt2 promotes fat production.
Thus, when Sirt2 levels in pre-adipocytes are low, more fat cells develop but when Sirt2 levels are high that process is blocked.
"So, to reduce the amount of fat in the body and help people stay thin, we need to find an activator of Sirt2," said Kahn.
The research appears in the August issue of Cell Metabolism.
Last Mod: 17 Ağustos 2007, 11:07