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Unsaturated fat breakdown leads to complications of acute pancreatitis in obese patients
Date:11/2/2011

the researchers combined healthy pancreatic cells with the unsaturated fatty acids in a test tube, the pancreatic cells died.

Then, they induced pancreatitis in obese mice and found that like the human patients, they had high amounts of fat in their pancreases. The fat in obese mice was mostly unsaturated. Kidneys of the mice with pancreatitis were damaged and contained fat deposits, an unexpected finding supported by studies in human autopsy tissue. Infusing unsaturated fatty acids into the bloodstream of the animals leads to lung injury akin to the problems seen in human patients, while administration of saturated fatty acids does not.

"Now that we better understand why these complications arise, we might be able to prevent them and reduce deaths," Dr. Singh said. "We must find ways to stop this toxic process from happening."

He and his team are studying ways to prevent the generation of unsaturated fatty acids in obese rodents to see what happens when they develop acute pancreatitis.


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Contact: Anita Srikameswaran
SrikamAV@upmc.edu
412-578-9193
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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