Modern science offers experimental compounds that offer exciting possibilities to tackle obesity,media reported. Some can mistake the body for having enough, while others manipulate the metabolic process to let the body burn off excess fat. Recently, researchers discovered a new molecule that belongs to the latter category, which can reduce the fat in mice without changing their diet.
Researchers from Virginia State University and the University of New South Wales in Australia have jointly identified a molecule that is thought to have the potential to overcome other disadvantages such as degreaser therapy.
The newly discovered molecule, called BAM15, is a “mitochondrial dissote agent” that works in a way that targets mitochondria, often referred to as a cell power source, and changes the way they consume and distribute energy throughout the body.
This method increases the concentration of protons in the membrane in the mitochondria. Normally, mitochondria rely on proton balance on both sides of the membrane to generate energy when the proton passes through a special enzyme embedded in the membrane wall. This is called proton dynamics (PMF), which bypasses this key enzyme by increasing the number of protons in the matrix, allowing the BAM15 molecule to force the cells to take corrective action. Because there are too many protons in the body, the cells expel the protons outside the cell membrane wall to fight the fat, which can burn the fuel.
“So anything that reduces PMF has the potential to increase breathing,” said Webster Santos, a chemistry professor at Virginia Tech. Mitochondrial dissote is a small molecule that can enter the mitochondria and help cells breathe. They effectively alter the metabolism of cells so that we can burn more calories without doing any exercise. “
The researchers demonstrated the effectiveness of the BAM15 molecule through a series of studies in mice. In these mice, although they ate the same food as the control group, they lost weight after taking the medicine. The team believes this molecule works without affecting the satiety center in the brain, which does not affect appetite control, and it also appears to be able to function without changing body temperature and is not toxic at high doses.
But researchers who want to determine the effectiveness of BAM15 in humans still have a lot of work to do, and there is certainly no guarantee that they will get such a squeeze. In addition to safety, one limitation the team is trying to address is how long the dose is effective in the body, and in mouse models, its effect is relatively short. The researchers say they have identified the mutation in the molecule, which could lead to a new approach.
“We’re basically looking for roughly the same type of molecule, but it needs to stay in the body for a longer period of time to produce results, ” says Santos. We are adjusting the chemical structure of the compound. So far, we have manufactured hundreds of molecules related to this. “
If the technology can be applied to humans, the researchers say, it could be used to address a range of health problems, not just obesity and related diseases such as cardiovascular or fatty liver disease. The molecule has also been shown to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, which is associated with degenerative diseases and the development of aging.
“If you can reduce aging, you can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease,” Santos explains. All of these reactive oxygen species-related or inflammatory-related diseases can benefit from mitochondrial disassociation agents. So we can look in that direction. “
The study was published in Nature Communications.