Menu

Allele Linked to Obesity in People

A single nucleotide polymorphism in BDNF is tied with lower levels of the protein and higher body-mass index.

Nov 3, 2015
Kerry Grens

FLICKR, TONY ALTERThe gene for brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF)—important for neuronal health and also implicated in appetite—has been associated with obesity in humans, and scientists have now figured out why. An allele of BDNF, called C, leads to lower protein levels because of disrupted binding to a transcription factor.

“Lower BDNF levels may contribute to obesity in people with the C allele. If these findings are supported by additional studies, boosting BDNF levels may prove beneficial,” lead author Joan Han of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center said in a press release.

Hans’s group combed through the genetic and health data of more than 31,000 people, finding that those with the C allele—caused by a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)—were more likely to have increased body fat and a higher body-mass index (BMI). The team also analyzed postmortem tissue from 84 people and found lower BDNF levels in the hypothalamus among those with the CC genotype.

In the lab, Hans and her colleagues found that a transcription factor binds to BDNF at the site on the typical allele where the SNP occurs. The SNP in the C allele reduces this binding, they showed last week (October 29) in Cell Reports.

“This study explains how a single genetic change in BDNF influences obesity and may affect BDNF protein levels. Finding people with specific causes of obesity may allow us to evaluate effective, more-personalized treatments,” study coauthor Jack Yanovski, an investigator at the National Institutes of Health’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, said in the press release.

January 2019

Cannabis on Board

Research suggests ill effects of cannabinoids in the womb

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

Cell culture made easy with new 24-channel pipetting heads for VIAFLO 96/384
Cell culture made easy with new 24-channel pipetting heads for VIAFLO 96/384
INTEGRA has responded to customers’ requests and developed two new 24-channel pipetting heads, extending the capabilities of its popular VIAFLO 96/384.
Horizon Discovery extends CRISPR Screening Service to primary human T cells
Horizon Discovery extends CRISPR Screening Service to primary human T cells
Horizon Discovery Group plc (LSE: HZD) (“Horizon” or “the Company”), a global leader in gene editing and gene modulation technologies, today announced the extension of its CRISPR Screening Service to includeex vivoT lymphocytes. The service extension meets the requirements of immunology-based research in drug discovery,enabling new gene targets to be identified in biologically and potentially therapeutically relevant settings.
pIC50: The Advantages of Thinking Logarithmically
pIC50: The Advantages of Thinking Logarithmically
Watch this webinar from Collaborative Drug Discovery to learn about how using pIC50 helps you get a better sense of the relative potencies, calculate the correct mean of multiple values, and select better sampling doses.
WIN a VIAFLO 96/384 to supercharge your microplate pipetting!
WIN a VIAFLO 96/384 to supercharge your microplate pipetting!
INTEGRA Biosciences is offering labs the chance to win a VIAFLO 96/384 pipette. Designed to simplify plate replication, plate reformatting or reservoir-to-plate transfers, the VIAFLO 96/384 allows labs without the space or budget for an expensive pipetting robot to increase the speed and throughput of routine tasks.