Engineered bacteria keep mice lean

June 24, 2014
Credit: Martha Sexton/public domain

Obesity levels are rising throughout the world. As obesity rates increase, so do the incidences of diabetes, heart disease, and other serious health conditions.

The bacteria within an individual's gut can influence their susceptibility to these disorders. Therefore, altering the microbe population in the gut could prevent or reverse disease.

A June 24th study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation demonstrates that modified bacteria can prevent weight gain in mice. Sean Davies and colleagues at Vanderbilt University made bacteria that produce a compound called NAPE, which signals to the brain to stop eating.

Mice that consumed NAPE-producing bacteria in their water ate less when given high fat food, which limited and associated symptoms.

More information: Paper: Incorporation of therapeutically modified bacteria into gut microbiota inhibits obesity, J Clin Invest. DOI: 10.1172/JCI72517

Related Stories

Your gut bacteria may predict your obesity risk

August 28, 2013

(HealthDay)—Bacteria in people's digestive systems—gut germs—seem to affect whether they become overweight or obese, and new research sheds more light on why that might be.

Chronic intake of Western diet kills mice

June 19, 2014

(Medical Xpress)—When Cornell researchers fed high-fat Western diets to mice engineered without key immune system receptors to recognize pathogens, the mice died from lethal lung damage.

Recommended for you

Flow means 'go' for proper lymph system development

July 27, 2015

The lymphatic system provides a slow flow of fluid from our organs and tissues into the bloodstream. It returns fluid and proteins that leak from blood vessels, provides passage for immune and inflammatory cells from the ...

Fluorescent material reveals how cells grow

July 21, 2015

Fibre from a semiconducting polymer, developed for solar cells, is an excellent support material for the growth of new human tissue. Researchers at Linköping University have shown that the fibre glows, which makes it possible ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.