Cambridge - cells in the adipose tissue of massively obese people cannot endlessly absorb and store fat, but lead to obesity-associated diseases such as diabetes or heart disease at certain turning point. British scientists from the University of Cambridge describe this in the International Journal of Obesity Research (10.1038 / ijo.2010.107). In addition to better understanding of physiological processes in lipid metabolism, their investigation should also provide more clarity about the occurrence of related and significant diseases, according to the authors, under the direction of and.
Although obese people are known to be at greater risk of developing diabetes, developing cardiovascular disease, or developing cancer, scientists have not yet fully understood the link. For example, there are also obese people who do not suffer from any of the diseases mentioned and who stay healthy for long time.
Using molecular genetic investigation methods and various mouse experiments, the researchers in the working group around Vidal-Puig has now acquired further insight in the field. They discovered that the levels of protein called SFRP-1 in fat cells go up to point and the main task is to recruit new fat cells to absorb more fat overall. But from this point on, if the body receives more fat through food, the SFRP-1 levels drop again. As kind of switch, this leads to obesity-associated diseases, according to the results of the scientists. Accordingly, the time of fat intake seems to be associated with the occurrence of the diseases. Together with other molecules, this protein determines the activity of fat cells and the balance between consumption and absorption of calories. Such findings, according to one of the authors, are indispensable in order to better recognize and treat obesity-associated diseases in the future.