Discovering a new obesity drug

Discovering a new obesity drug. 45843.jpegA study, led by Brazil, has cut by 11% the weight of obese monkeys in a month...

An experimental drug reduced the weight of obese monkeys by 11% in just one month, and is seen as the new promise to combat obesity in humans, researchers said on Wednesday (9th).

The drug, known as Adipotide works by attacking the blood flow to certain type of fat, known as white adipose tissue, which tends to accumulate under the skin around the belly.

Most of the drugs for being overweight are focused on reducing appetite, increasing metabolism or preventing absorption of fat.

The survey, conducted by MD Anderson Cancer Center, University of Texas, proved even more promising in mice that lost 30% of their weight during tests.

"Most anti-obesity drug fail to match effects between rodents and primates," explained Brazilian Doctor Renata Pasqualini, an author of the study, who spoke to the journal Science Translational Medicine.

The monkeys used in the study gained weight in a natural way, eating at home and failing to exercise. Weight loss was recorded in the first three weeks of treatment, with a slight increase in the fourth week. On average, there was a reduction of 11% of the total mass at the end of the period.

The drug "binds to a protein located on the surface of the blood vessels of the fat, and contains digestive secretions that induce cell death," the report says. "When blood circulation is inhibited, fat cells are reabsorbed and metabolized."

Another promising sign is that the monkeys treated with the drug improved their insulin resistance, suggesting that it may prevent the development of type 2 diabetes. But some also recorded adverse effects on the kidneys, which can be avoided by reducing the dose.

The research funding was provided by the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute.


Translated from the Portuguese version by:

Lisa Karpova


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Author`s name Oksana Orlovskaya