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Pathologically elevated blood fat levels in obesity: Researchers discover molecular causes
Date:2/9/2009

substantially more LSR, and blood fat levels dropped back to normal.

"Thus, we have shown for the first time that the LSR molecule plays a central role in lipid metabolism," Herzig says. We were also able to provide evidence that apparently it depends on body weight how much LSR is produced in the liver: being overweight is associated with reduced production." Hence LSR is a possible target for future treatments of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. There is a great need for such treatments, since it is estimated that about 300 million people worldwide will suffer from type 2 diabetes as early as next year. "If we were able to increase hepatic LSR production in these patients, this would relieve essential aspects of this disease," said Herzig. All the more so because increased LSR production in the liver not only reduces blood fat levels but also promotes fat breakdown in the liver.

Cancer patients, too, might benefit from these findings. Many of them suffer from what is called tumor cachexia a life-threatening loss of weight that is associated with the development of fatty liver. "We have found first evidence suggesting that LSR is overproduced in the livers of these patients so that too much fat accumulates in the liver, while peripheral organs are hardly supplied with fat, or energy," Herzig says. However, he adds, more research needs to be done.


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Contact: Dr. Stefanie Seltmann
presse@dkfz.de
49-622-142-2854
Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres
Source:Eurekalert

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