Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Scientists identify gene linked to thinness that may help resist weight gain

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     In a study in the journal Cell, researchers use a genetic database of 47,000 individuals in Estonia to identify a gene linked to thinness that may play a role in resisting weight gain in metabolic healthy thin people.
     Genetic variants in the ALK gene unique to thin individuals were found when DNA samples and clinical data of healthy thin individuals were compares. ALK gene usually mutates in carious types of cancers, but it's role outside of cancer is unclear. Mice with deleted ALK had lower body weight and body fat. It was suggested that ALK plays a part in the brain by instructing fat tissues to burn more fat from food.
     ALK inhibitors are used in cancer treatments. Shutting down or reducing function of ALK could help cure cancers and promote thinness. A limitation is that biobanks that collect biological medical data and tissue samples don't have a universal standard in data collection, so it makes comparability a challenge to confirm findings.


1 comment:

  1. I recall a documentary I watched one time and as a social experiment groups were all placed with plates containing different nutritional values. I wish I could remember what it was called, but from what I do remember, it discussed the way some people are more prone to eating food that's in front of them regardless of hunger cues, while others would stop eating once they were full rather than when the plate was empty.
    With the amount of factors that contribute to eating habits, as well as metabolic rates, this study is very interesting! From the way genes and outside influence can effect ones relationship with food to the way some groups of people are more effected by modern sugar consumption, reads like this really interest me, good share!