A new drug that targets the blood supply of fat cells may become a treatment for obesity. Researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center gave obese monkeys an experimental drug called adipotide.
The drug kills the blood vessels that keep fat tissue alive, essentially killing fat tissue too. The monkeys that were given the drug lost more than ten percent of their body weight, and had less fat around their abdomen with no sign of nausea.
Dr. Kirstin Barnhardt said, "They get overweight on their own. It's very much like humans." Dr. Wadih Arap "It is incredibly exciting; a dream coming true in slow motion."
The drug eliminated no muscle, just fat. After the monkeys stopped taking the drug, they resumed their couch potato lifestyle and gained it all back. With the success in monkeys, researchers are already applying for drug approval from the FDA, and hoping to start a similar study on people within a year. Knowing there will likely be no shortage of volunteers.
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