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Weight-Loss Surgery May Affect Fat-Related Genes

THURSDAY, April 11 (HealthDay News) -- Weight-loss surgery changes the levels of genes involved in burning and storing fat, a new study says.

The findings may help lead to the development of new drugs that mimic this weight-loss-associated control of gene regulation, said the authors of the study published online April 11 in the journal Cell Reports.

"We provide evidence that in severely obese people, the levels of specific genes that control how fat is burned and stored in the body are changed to reflect poor metabolic health," senior author Juleen Zierath, a professor with the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, said in a journal news release.

"After [weight-loss] surgery, the levels of these genes are restored to a healthy state, which mirrors weight loss and coincides with overall improvement in metabolism," Zierath explained.

Weight-loss surgery -- also called bariatric surgery -- can help obese people lose large amounts of weight in a short time. The surgery also leads to early remission of type 2 diabetes in many patients.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases has more about weight-loss surgery.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Cell Reports, news release, April 11, 2013

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