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Nov 7, 2007

Researchers Identify Binding Sites for Fat Cell Generating Protein

  • Scientists conducted a genome-wide analysis of how perixosome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR-gamma), a protein responsible for generating fat cells, turns on various genes related to obesity.

    “To date, only a limited number of direct targets for PPAR-gamma have been identified,” according to M. Sabry Hamza, Ph.D, a postdoctoral research fellow at the Genome Institute of Singapore, a division of Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research.

    “Our findings provide a genome-wide map of PPAR-gamma binding sites during the course of adipocyte differentiation,” Dr. Hamza notes. “We have also identified direct targets of PPAR-gamma that when inhibited lead to a dramatic reduction of adipogenic potential.

    “Ongoing analysis will help us decipher whether these direct targets control adipogenesis, insulin sensitization, or determination of fat cell type.”

    The researchers are presenting their findings on November 7 at the AACR Centennial Conference on Translational Cancer Medicine.



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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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