Fat cells can be turned into energy-burning cells, scientists discover

Energy-burning fat cells

Energy-burning fat cells


new discovery by scientists at UT Southwestern Medical Center Touchstone may allow fat cells in the human body to be converted into energy-burning cells , which may have strong implications on the treatment of diseases such as diabetes and obesity.


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The team from the academic medical facility’s diabetes research center recently managed to use CRISPR – a powerful technology that allows for the editing of genomes and DNA sequences – to essentially transform energy-storing fat cells into ones that work to burn energy instead.

The leader of the research – Internal Medicine professor Rana Gupta – said that the process was like “flipping a switch”, and that they essentially “removed the brakes” on energy-burning pathways in fat cells by creating mutations within them.

“Our research demonstrates that releasing this brake in fat cells can potentially help make existing diabetes medications much more effective.”

A breakthrough in the fight against obesity and diabetes.

So with the team’s discovery now allowing for fat-storing cells to be converted into ones that burn energy, it’s quite apparent how this could potentially aid in treating those with obesity and heart disease.

“Our research demonstrates that releasing this brake in fat cells can potentially help make existing diabetes medications much more effective,” Gupta added. “There is tremendous interest in driving the production of these energy-burning fat cells as a treatment against metabolic diseases such as diabetes.”

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