Joslin Researchers Determine Hormone Linked to Improved Glucose Metabolism Activates Browning of Fat

Joslin Researchers Determine Hormone Linked to Improved Glucose Metabolism Activates Browning of Fat


researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center
have identified the mechanism by which a hormone called FGF21 helps improve glucose control and
metabolism and what this study does is it shows
that one big factor in this is the ability of FGF21 to stimulate
what’s called browning of white fat, that is where the white fat
becomes more energetically active and begins to burn energy rather than store
energy. This improves weight loss and it also
improves glucose levels FGF21 is secreted by the liver the
researchers wanted to know if the hormone’s beneficial actions depended on insulin signaling pathways in liver
tissues. So they knocked out those pathways in some of the subjects. They then pumped
FGF21 into the subject systems for two weeks
if FGF21 was dependent on those pathways there should have been no improvements in
glucose metabolism and what we found was that even without
insulin signaling in liver FGF21 could still improve glucose
metabolism and subsequently, of course, we showed that’s in large part because of these effects on fat. To prove this they
removed the brown fat from the subjects showing that the beneficial effects were
a result of white fat browning, rather than just the activation of brown
fat. The stimulation browning could have potential for drug creation. There’s a lot of interest in FGF21 as a potential drug that’s why several drug companies
are now working on it and whether it be the FGF21 itself for
maybe some derivative of it so I do think that this has a chance to
have effects

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