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Cold And Brown Fat Raise Prospect Of A New Method Of Treating Obesity

Date:
April 21, 2009
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Researchers have shown that adults use brown fat to convert energy to heat - a discovery that may provide new possibilities in treating overweight and obesity.
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Sven Enerbäck, Professor at the Institute of Biomedicine at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden and others show that adults use brown fat to convert energy to heat - a discovery that may provide new possibilities in treating overweight and obesity.

It has previously been believed that the brown fat found in infants disappears as we grow up, but the new study shows that this is not the case. Brown fat cells have been found in adults, in the lower part of the neck just above the collarbone.

The region of brown fat cells in the neck was tested by placing five volunteers, in thin clothing, in a chilly room for a couple of hours. The researchers then investigated this region by PET scanning and discovered that metabolism there was on average 15 times higher than in the neighbouring white fat tissue. The result suggests that the brown fat may play a significant role in metabolism.

Enerbäck believes that this discovery can lead to new and better ways of treating obesity. These would be based on an exciting treatment strategy that focuses on increasing the amount of fat burnt by the body rather than focusing solely on reducing the intake of energy.

This research was recently published in The New England Journal of Medicine.


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The above post is reprinted from materials provided by University of Gothenburg. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Gothenburg. "Cold And Brown Fat Raise Prospect Of A New Method Of Treating Obesity." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102241.htm>.
University of Gothenburg. (2009, April 21). Cold And Brown Fat Raise Prospect Of A New Method Of Treating Obesity. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102241.htm
University of Gothenburg. "Cold And Brown Fat Raise Prospect Of A New Method Of Treating Obesity." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102241.htm (accessed July 31, 2015).

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