Gut hormones' regulation of fat production abnormal in obesity

The gut hormone FGF19, released a few hours after eating, turns off fat production by regulating gene expression in the liver, but this regulation is abnormal in obesity, researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign report. The study, ‘Intestinal FGF15/19 physiologically repress hepatic lipogenesis in the late fed-state by activating SHP and DNMT3A’, published in Nature Communications, was led by molecular and integrative physiology professor Jongsook Kim Kemper and research scientist Young-Chae Kim.

Lipocalin-2 (LCN2) hormone suppresses food intake and increase satiety

Lipocalin-2 (LCN2) hormone could be used as a potential treatment in people with obesity whose natural signals for feeling full no longer work, after researchers found that it can suppress food intake and increase the feeling of fullness in mice and has shown similar results in humans and non-human primates. The outcomes were reported in the paper, ‘Lipocalin-2 is an anorexigenic signal in primates’, published in eLife.

Remission of obesity-related complications after adolescent bariatric surgery

Eighty to 90% of adolescents benefit from lasting weight loss following bariatric surgery and most experience the remission of obesity-related complications such as elevated blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes and musculoskeletal pain, among others, according to researchers from Children's Hospital Colorado (Children's Colorado).

Bariatric surgery may reduce COVID-19 severity in patients with obesity

A Cleveland Clinic study has reported that among patients who have obesity and who tested positive for COVID-19, a past history of bariatric surgery was significantly associated with a lower risk of hospital and intensive care unit admission. The results of the study, ‘Association of prior metabolic and bariatric surgery with severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in patients with obesity’, were published in the journal of Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases.

Adipose tissue and the inflammatory factors that aggravate COVID-19

There is growing evidence that adipose tissue plays a key role in the aggravation of COVID-19. One of the theories under investigation is that fat cells (adipocytes) act as a reservoir for SARS-CoV-2 and increase viral load in obese or overweight individuals. Scientists also suspect that during infection, fat cells release substances into the bloodstream that boost the inflammatory reaction triggered by the virus in the organism.

Leptin plays a role in the development of obesity at a young age

Young children of African ancestry are more at risk of developing obesity if they possess a genetic variant that reduces their ability to produce the hormone leptin, according to a study, ‘Genetic Studies of Leptin Concentrations Implicate Leptin in the Regulation of Early Adiposity’, published in the journal Diabetes. Interestingly, adults with the variant do not have the same risk, suggesting that leptin plays a role in the development of obesity at a young age but the obesity does not continue into adulthood.