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Receptor for Tasting Fat is CD36

Receptor for Tasting Fat is CD36 | Longevity science | Scoop.it
For the first time, a team of scientists at Washington University School of Medicine has identified a human receptor that can taste fat.

 

CD36 is a membrane protein found on the surface of many cell types in humans, mice, rats and many vertebrate animals. The findings also suggest that variations in the CD36 gene can make people more or less sensitive to the taste of fat.

 

“The ultimate goal is to understand how our perception of fat in food might influence what foods we eat and the quantities of fat that we consume,” said Dr. Nada Abumrad, senior investigator and the Dr. Robert A. Atkins Professor of Medicine and Obesity Research.

 

“In this study, we’ve found one potential reason for individual variability in how people sense fat. It may be, as was shown recently, that as people consume more fat, they become less sensitive to it, requiring more intake for the same satisfaction. What we will need to determine in the future is whether our ability to detect fat in foods influences our fat intake, which clearly would have an impact on obesity.”

 

The CD36 discovery follows research that had identified a role for the gene in rats and mice. Scientists had learned that when animals are genetically engineered without a working CD36 gene, they no longer display a preference for fatty foods. In addition, animals that can’t make the CD36 protein have difficulty digesting fat.

 

Up to 20 percent of people are believed to have the variant in the CD36 gene that is associated with making significantly less CD36 protein. That, in turn, could mean they are less sensitive to the presence of fat in food.

 

Dr. Abumrad was the first to identify CD36 as the protein that facilitates the uptake of fatty acids. She explained that better understanding of how the protein works in people could be important in the fight against obesity.

“Diet can affect sensitivity to fat, and in animals, diet also influences the amount of CD36 that’s made,” added Dr. Pepino. “If we follow the results in animals, a high-fat diet would lead to less production of CD36, and that, in turn, could make a person less sensitive to fat. From our results in this study, we would hypothesize that people with obesity may make less of the CD36 protein. So it would seem logical that the amounts of the protein we make can be modified, both by a person’s genetics and by the diet they eat.”


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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New analysis indicates America remains obese

New analysis indicates America remains obese | Longevity science | Scoop.it

Twelve states have obesity rates that top 30 percent, according to an analysis released by the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

 

The problem is not only that America remains fat, despite the best efforts of governments and activists in recent years, but also that we don’t know for certain whether the country is headed in the right direction.

 

 

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Protein that stimulates brown fat could boost weight loss strategies

Protein that stimulates brown fat could boost weight loss strategies | Longevity science | Scoop.it

The ability to activate brown fat in the body could provide a means to fight obesity and keep the weight off.

 

Now scientists have discovered a protein that could allow them to do just that.


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Study in Mice Discovers Injection of Heat-Generating Cells Reduces Belly Fat

Study in Mice Discovers Injection of Heat-Generating Cells Reduces Belly Fat | Longevity science | Scoop.it

The injection of a tiny capsule containing heat-generating cells into the abdomens of mice led those animals to burn abdominal fat and initially lose about 20 percent of belly fat after 80 days of treatment.

 

Researchers conducting the study were surprised to see that the injected cells even acted like “missionaries,” converting existing belly fat cells into so-called thermogenic cells, which use fat to generate heat.

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Newly-discovered “beige fat” cells provide a new target in the fight against obesity

Newly-discovered “beige fat” cells provide a new target in the fight against obesity | Longevity science | Scoop.it

The existence of two different types of fat – or adipose tissue – in mammals has long been known: white fat, which stores calories and in excess results in obesity, and brown fat, which burns calories to generate energy and heat. Now scientists at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have confirmed the existence of a third, genetically distinct type of fat called “beige fat,” which they say is a potential therapeutic target for treating obesity.

 

A 2008 paper out of the Dana-Farber lab of Bruce Spiegelman, PhD, had proposed the existence of a third type of fat cell, and now Spiegelman and his team have become the first to isolate them and determine beige fat’s unique genetic profile. They found that beige fat shares much in common with brown fat. Both have the ability to burn large amounts of calories as they both contain energy-burning organelles called mitochondria, which contain iron and are responsible for the cells’ brown and beige hues.

 

"The therapeutic potential of both kinds of brown fat cells is clear," the authors say in their study, "as genetic manipulations in mice that create more brown or beige fat have strong anti-obesity and anti-diabetic actions."

 

However...

 

 

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