A mouse model of obesity and heart problems may point the way to a fat burning medicine, Elizabeth Tracey reports


A type of mouse used to study obesity and heart problems has demonstrated the efficacy of an existing medicine to help them lose weight, and in the places where it matters most, around organs like the heart. That’s according to new research by David Kass, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins, and colleagues.

Kass: The difference in body weight between the two groups was 27%. There were many more mice in the treatment arm that actually lost weight. The placebo arm most of the mice gained weight, the relative difference was substantial. And then we did scans and showed that yup this is total body fat. That’s what disappeared, that’s where the weight is going. Lean mass wasn’t changed, and what makes this particularly attractive is that this happened without any change in activity, without any change in food intake. They ate just as much.  :29

Kass says this medication was originally developed as a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease so it has already been used in people. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.