Will this new drug be the weight-loss elixir we have been looking for? Could be! According to a new study, scientists have cracked the code to gorging unrestricted food without blow-up consequence. Research findings at the Flinders University in Australia say they found that when a single gene called RCAN1 was removed in mice, the rodents were able to eat a high-fat diet without gaining weight. This held true even when the animals got especially gluttonous and gorged on fat rich food.
Professor Damien Keating, who led the study published in the Journal EMBO Reports, said: "We looked at a variety of different diets with various timespans from eight weeks up to six months, and in every case, we saw health improvements in the absence of the RCAN1 gene."
The researchers conducting the study said that inhibiting the same gene in humans could help address the increasing obesity epidemics and perhaps lead to new drugs for diseases like diabetes.
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"We know a lot of people struggle to lose weight or even control their weight for a number of different reasons. The findings in this study could mean developing a pill which would target the function of RCAN1 and may result in weight loss," Keating says.
The Australian reports that this new ray of hope has gained tremendous support from many and the National Health and Medical Research Council has also provided funding to extend the research and “continue to explore viable options”.
As far as the findings are concerned, Damien said the research shows that “we can potentially make a real difference in the fight against obesity."
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“The ideal would be to take some sort of pill that didn’t require you to watch your diet, that didn’t require you to exercise,” he says. “Now, that might seem like a pipe dream, but the findings that we have out of this mouse study at least indicate a novel pathway that we might be able to target.”