Appetite-Controlling Gene Discovered
Australian scientists discovered a new gene responsible for controlling appetite in humans. This discovery could lead to the first gene-based drug to treat obesity and diabetes.
The gene is called Beacon. What it does is up your appetite and is found in greater abundance in people suffering from obesity.
This is the third gene discovered that affects appetite. The other two are called leptin and NPy. Of these three, however, this new gene discovery of Beacon is the most promising for getting on the market sooner due to genetic factors. Scientists are very excited about it and say it could be a very important step in the whole obesity, diabetes pathway.
Hormone Found to Reduce Appetite
A recent study at London's Imperial College found that a hormone produced by the intestines, called peptide YY3-36 (PYY), could curb the appetite and help obese people lose weight.
Previous studies had shown that PYY curbed the appetites of normal weight individuals, but it had been unclear if the hormone would also work for obese people. Leptin, a hormone that works in similar way as PYY, only seems to reduce food intake in normal weight individuals, not in obese people. The researchers noted that this was first time a hormone caused a long-term reduction in calorie intake in obese volunteers.
The findings appeared in The New England Journal of Medicine.