14 Obesity genes discovered

  • The epidemic of Obesity is driven by high-calorie diets, sedentary lifestyles & genes that regulate the metabolism (fat storage & catabolism)
  • Hundreds of genes associated with obesity have been identified by the geneticists, that are prevalent in obese people than in people with a healthy weight.
  • O’Rourke and her collaborators used the obesity model of C. elegans worms that share more than 70% of our genes to screen 293 genes associated with obesity in humans with aim of identifying which of the genes have pro & anti-obesity effects.
  • Automation and supervised machine learning-assisted testing were used to identify 14 genes pro-obesity genes & 2 anti-obesity genes. Further research also proved that blocking one of the 14 genes in lab mice prevented weight gain, improved insulin sensitivity.
  • Genomics-based combination therapy is the future for many diseases including obesity however more research has to be conducted to design a proven therapy.

Do you want to read more about this topic?

  1. Wenfan Ke, Jordan N. Reed, Chenyu Yang, Noel Higgason, Leila Rayyan, Carolina Wählby, Anne E. Carpenter, Mete Civelek, Eyleen J. O’Rourke. Genes in human obesity loci are causal obesity genes in C. elegans. PLOS Genetics, 2021; 17 (9): e1009736 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1009736

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