Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Blocking A Muscle Growth-limiting Hormone Protects Against Obesity And Atherosclerosis

Date:
June 23, 2009
Source:
The Endocrine Society
Summary:
Knockout of myostatin, a growth factor that limits muscle growth, can decrease body fat and promote resistance against developing atherosclerosis, or "hardening" of the arteries, according to a new study conducted in mice.

Knockout of myostatin, a growth factor that limits muscle growth, can decrease body fat and promote resistance against developing atherosclerosis, or "hardening" of the arteries, according to a new study conducted in mice. The results were presented June 11 at The Endocrine Society's 91st Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

"Obesity increases the risk of atherosclerosis, which accounts for 75% of all cardiovascular events, such as heart attacks and strokes," said study co-author Shalender Bhasin, MD, professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and chief of the Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Nutrition at Boston Medical Center. "Current strategies aimed at preventing heart disease consist primarily of lowering cholesterol levels, but patients reaching the desired cholesterol levels are still at risk for atherosclerosis if they have other risk factors, such as obesity."

Humans and animals with a mutation in the myostatin gene are extremely muscular and have little fat, past research shows. Also, when the gene encoding myostatin is knocked out in mice, their muscle mass increases.

Bhasin and his co-workers wanted to find out if inhibiting myostatin in mice could resist the development of diet-induced obesity and of atherosclerosis, the buildup of lipid deposits called plaque that can narrow and clog coronary arteries.

The researchers took mice that were genetically altered to develop atherosclerosis and then cross-bred them with myostatin knockout mice. Ten generations later, they had mice who were genetically predisposed to both atherosclerosis and inactivation of myostatin. For controls, they studied mice with a genetic predisposition for atherosclerosis but with intact myostatin gene. All mice received a high-fat diet for 12 weeks, to spur the development of atherosclerosis.

Compared with controls, the mice with deleted myostatin gene had much less body fat and 30 percent lower fasting blood sugar and 80% lower fasting insulin levels, showing a reduction in obesity and a strong resistance to developing diabetes, the authors reported. They also had 50 percent lower low-density-lipoprotein ("bad") cholesterol and 30 to 60 percent lower levels of total cholesterol and triglycerides (fats in the blood), respectively. These results indicate protection against the development of atherosclerosis, according to Bhasin.

More research is needed to demonstrate the safety and effectiveness of myostatin inhibitors in humans, Bhasin said. However, he said that that this therapeutic strategy already is possible. Experimental drugs called myostatin blockers or inhibitors are being studied as potential treatments of muscle wasting disorders and limb injuries.

Some currently available nutritional supplements are touted as myostatin inhibitors, but Bhasin said he doubts they are effective.

Powen Tu, a medical student at Boston University School of Medicine, will present the study, which was funded by the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Endocrine Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Endocrine Society. "Blocking A Muscle Growth-limiting Hormone Protects Against Obesity And Atherosclerosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 June 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112557.htm>.
The Endocrine Society. (2009, June 23). Blocking A Muscle Growth-limiting Hormone Protects Against Obesity And Atherosclerosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112557.htm
The Endocrine Society. "Blocking A Muscle Growth-limiting Hormone Protects Against Obesity And Atherosclerosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112557.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

AFP (July 28, 2014) The worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola epidemic grips west Africa, killing hundreds. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins