Fat Killer


Unlike animals, plants and bacteria do not get fat. They have a set of enzymes called the glyoxylate shunt that can digest fat, but these enzymes are missing in humans. When genes from the bacterium E coli responsible for producing the enzymes were cloned and introduced into the liver cells of mice, the mammal produced the enzymes and remained skinny for weeks. The study reported in the June 3 issue of Cell Metabolism, is the first to manipulate a metabolic pathway successfully in mammals and has implications in fighting obesity.


Down To Earth, July 2009