Researchers are homing in on genetics as a potential cause of obesity, but to date, few obesity-related genes have been discovered, and those tend to be very rare in the population (See " Genes Do Play a Role in Obesity,"). But a group including scientists from Myriad Genetics and University of Utah, both in Salt Lake City, and Bayer Corp., West Haven, Conn., has identified a locus that is significantly linked to high body mass index (BMI) in obese women; this locus will likely yield a gene that is more common than other known obesity genes. (S. Stone et al., "A major predisposition locus for severe obesity at 4p15-p14," American Journal of Human Genetics, 70 online at:, April 15, 2002). Many questions remain. The specific gene has not been identified, according to paper coauthor Steven C. Hunt, University of Utah. Nor do the researchers know how it...

Interested in reading more?

Magaizne Cover

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!