Research on Roundworms Could Help Weight Loss

Research on Roundworms Could Help Weight Loss

Researchers in California have found the exact hormone that causes your body to burn fat, thanks to them using roundworms as their test subjects.

What research was undertaken?

According to Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) Assistant Professor Supriya Srinivasan, senior author of the research published in the journal Nature, the key to the discovery was “Basic science”.

By experimenting on the C. elegans species of roundworm the team of biologists deleted a variety of genes in the hope of disrupting the path between serotonin and the fat burning mechanisms of the gut.

They discovered that one particular gene encodes the neuropeptide hormone FLP-7, which although had been discovered before in mammals had very little research undertaken on it.

The team of biologists used sensory cues to release serotonin, which in turn causes the hormone FLP-7 to be released.

This hormone was tagged with a fluorescent red protein, which enabled the researchers to track the movement through the translucent roundworm.

One triggered the hormone was seen moving through the roundworms circulatory system as it travelled from the brain to the gut where it then initiated fat burning.

It is hoped that with further research on human subjects this will lead to possible solutions for the weight loss epidemic we are currently faced with.


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