The scientists have identified a gene that is associated with a thinness. The owners of this gene can eat whatever they want and not gaining weight. Nearly 90% of people who want to lose weight make huge efforts for that. They go to the gym, they are on the diets, they take various drugs for weight loss. And there is a small mass of people who do not need to do anything, but at the same time remain slim and thin.
Researchers decided to use a genetic database, in which more than 47 thousand people were entered. The scientists were looking for the same thinness gene from them. Having revealed it, they found out that the gene has several functional meanings. For example, it is involved in brain expression and is involved in regulating energy expenditure.
Joseph Penninger, the director of the Institute for Life Sciences and professor of medical genetics at the University of British Columbia, noted that people with this gene make up about one percent of the population. They really do not choose what to eat, and can eat anything without gaining extra weight. The researchers compared the DNA images and clinical examination data from healthy, normal-weighted people and revealed the presence of genetic variants that are unique to people with their thinness gene called the ALK gene.
It turned out that that gene is able to mutate in various types of oncological diseases, and therefore it has gained a reputation among the doctors as an oncological gene that controls the development of tumors.
But the role of ALK outside oncology remains unclear. But a new study suggested that the gene could only be associated with thinness and weight maintenance. The scientists conducted an experiment on the laboratory rodents with the same gene. They were fed a variety of foods, including very high-calorie foods, so that they could gain weight.
But that did not happen. The organisms of mice remained resistant to obesity. They also had less weight than their counterparts without a gene, and did not have fatty deposits. The researchers concluded that the gene is actually expressed in the brain, and it is important to direct energy to adipose tissue to burn more fat from food.