Do you have some belly fat you want to burn? Researchers have come up with an injection to melt away fat from your waistline.
Doctors say the biggest threat to the millions of Americans who are obese is the weight they carry in their midsection. It's there, that so called visceral fat surrounds vital organs and poses several risks.
"Like type 2 diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease. And it's extremely difficult to remove this particular part of fat," says Dr. Ouliana Ziouzenkova, with Ohio State's Comprehensive Cancer Center.
But researchers at Ohio State's Comprehensive Cancer Center have taken an important first step in doing just that by using good fat to melt away the harmful white fat.
In the past, scientists have tried injecting white fat with energy-burning brown fat cells, but they are immediately killed by the immune system.
So researchers came up with ingenious capsules that carry brown fat cells into white fat and hide them from the immune system. The key is the capsule.
Dr. David Disilvestro says, "It's small enough that it won't allow immune cells to get inside and kill the cells inside the capsule, but it's large enough to allow proteins and hormones and things like that to pass in and out."
And when they do, white fat begins to burn.
In a new study, researchers fed mice a high fat diet and injected these capsules into their midsections. And in just 80 days saw a dramatic difference.
Dr. Ouliana Ziouzenkova says, "Unlike any other treatment we have, we find out that this mouse lost 20% of visceral that's 20% of visceral fat gone in less than 90 days and a promising new step toward battling obesity in the future.
In the coming months, researchers hope to try the injections on obese pets like cats and dogs.
They say the approach is extremely safe and even reversible. Human tests are still a few years away.
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