New approaches to reduce fat without sporting activities
Stick a plaster every day and swallow a pill and excess fat will go away on its own? What sounds like a dream to many overweight people could soon become a reality, because scientists have recently developed two approaches that could reduce body fat without physical activity. On the one hand, scientists at the University of Bonn showed in mice that extra pounds can be easily melted off by converting unwanted white fat cells into energy-consuming brown slimming cells. On the other hand, scientists from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have developed a patch that can break down fat in the abdominal region.
The vision is promising. If bacon rolls can simply be melted away by new approaches, this could also prevent the consequences of being overweight, such as joint problems, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), decreasing energy intake and increasing energy expenditure are the ultimate pharmacological goals. According to the IDF, more than 371 million people worldwide have diabetes, and that number will increase to over 550 million by 2030. 90% of people with diabetes around the world have type 2 diabetes. The IDF assumes that obesity accounts for 80 to 85 percent of the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
The pill for fat
"In studies on mice, we found various starting points for converting annoying white fat cells into desired brown fat cells," reports Prof. Dr. Alexander Pfeifer from the Institute for Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University of Bonn in a press release. The brown cells decrease white fat by converting it into thermal energy. In mice, it was observed that the increasing number of brown cells resulted in a weight reduction. Professor Pfeifer believes it is possible to use an active ingredient to combat obesity that converts white fat cells to brown ones.
The inflammatory reactions must also be blocked
"Apparently, in combating obesity, it could be a possible starting point to inhibit the inflammatory reactions in addition to the administration of cGMP-stimulating agents," explains Prof. Pfeifer. In a recent study, the researchers showed why the inflammatory reactions that often occur in obesity block such a conversion of the fat cells. However, there may be a starting point to circumvent this inhibition. The results have now been published in the specialist journal "Cell Reports".
The anti-fat patch
Researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have succeeded in developing a new revolutionary approach to reducing fat in the abdominal region. The experts developed a micro-needle patch that contains medication. These are able to convert unhealthy white fat in the human body into energy-burning brown fat. With this innovative approach, the scientists reduced the weight gain in mice by more than 30 percent over four weeks. "Our goal is to develop a pain-free patch that anyone can easily use, that is unobtrusive yet affordable," said Prof. Chen, a biotechnology expert who deals with obesity. You can find more on the topic in the article New medical plasters reduce belly fat by more than 30 percent.
So far still a dream of the future
Research in this area is currently still in its infancy. But the researchers are optimistic. The latest studies show that it is possible to develop a patch and pill that will help break down white fat cells. Maybe in 10 years we will actually put a patch on our stomach instead of doing sit-ups or throw in a pill instead of running around the block. Regardless of whether it is sports, nutrition, pills or plasters - a good remedy for increasing obesity worldwide would help many people. (fp)