A single gene and its variants may hold the key in developing a drug that could address obesity and regulate a person's appetite and metabolism.
Scientists have already been aware of the MC4R gene and its role in how people gain or lose weight. But scientists dug deeper and looked into a large collection of data that linked the gene to cases of obesity.
The study revealed 61 different MC4R gene variants, nine of which were associated with increased genetic activity. About six percent of the subjects studied were found to have one of the nine genetic variations, and those subjects displayed lower odds of obesity, diabetes and coronary artery disease.
With this information, it could pave the way for the development of a drug that would target this gene and its variants so that it could help people regulate their metabolism.
(Image credit: James Heilman/Wikimedia Commons)