Why all this talk about white and brown fat? Well, here’s some health news you might be interested in: researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have discovered a way of making white fat behave just like brown fat — which means all the fat in your body could potentially behave in a calorie-burning, healthy way.
The NIH researchers made their discovery when they conducted a clinical trial using mice. The research team first reduced the actions of a protein in the mice called “TGF-beta.”
The default behavior of white fat is to store energy. This latest health breakthrough creates a potential way for white fat to burn energy instead.
The TGF-beta blocking antibody is also being tested as an alternative cancer therapy in people through a trial at the National Cancer Institute. The potential side effects of the antibody still need to be tested on humans. In particular, the researchers worry about what unexpected effect the antibody may have on the human immune system.
In the meantime, the researchers’
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