New proteins hold clues to cure for diabetes, obesity

December 5th, 2008 - 11:55 am ICT by IANS  

Toronto, Dec 5 (IANS) A Canadian biochemist, along with his American colleagues, has discovered new proteins that work as “master regulators” in production of fat in the body.Gaining control of these proteins could spell the end of diabetes and obesity epidemic in the world, said Alberta University biochemist Dave Brindley in a statement Thursday.

Called lipins, these newly discovered proteins control fat production in the mammal body, he said. In all, there are four lipins in mammals, with two of them controlling fat production in the body.

“If there is an absence of the lipin, then you have no fat tissue at all. If you have too many lipin proteins, you become obese,” he said, adding that gaining control of these proteins will help fight the obesity epidemic.

He said his research proved that the lipins were involved in stimulating the liver to secrete fat into the blood, thus causing metabolic syndrome.

In turn, metabolic syndrome leads diabetes, obesity, high blood fats and high blood pressure, he said.

Knowing the influence of lipins on the body will help develop a treatment or even a cure for diabetes, obesity, high blood fats and high blood pressure, said Brindley.

But “nobody is going to cure anything in the near future; these things take time,” he said, adding that scientists now at least know that lipins are involved in causing metabolic syndrome.

“You never know with research; you never know what you’re going to discover; you never know how long it’s going to take,” he said.

“What we need to do is create therapies that would influence metabolic syndrome. I would love to get involved in developing activators or inhibitors for the different lipins,” he said.

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