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Weight and Obesity

Protein Prevents Weight Gain in Mice Fed High-Fat Diet

20 years, 8 months ago

10644  0
Posted on Nov 10, 2003, 11 p.m. By Bill Freeman

New research suggests that a blood protein may help to prevent obesity. H Roger Lijnen at the University of Leuven in Belgium found that mice genetically engineered to have high levels of a blood protein called plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) gained significantly less weight than normal mice when fed a high-fat diet.

New research suggests that a blood protein may help to prevent obesity. H Roger Lijnen at the University of Leuven in Belgium found that mice genetically engineered to have high levels of a blood protein called plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) gained significantly less weight than normal mice when fed a high-fat diet. However, having higher-than-normal levels of the protein had no effect on mice fed a normal diet. PAI-1 prevents blood clots from breaking down by counteracting a natural clot-buster called tissue plasminogen activator (tpa), therefore it is also an established risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Lijnen is not certain as to how PAI-1 prevents obesity in mice, however he suspects that the protein may have an effect on the cells that make up fatty tissue. A pill to prevent obesity is the dream of many dieters and pharmaceutical companies, however more research needs to be done to see whether raising PAI-1 levels is safe.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology 2003;23:78-84

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