High hopes for anti-fat molecule

January 24, 1997

A chemical that could be used to tackle obesity is being investigated by scientists at Strathclyde University. The chemical, which causes weight loss in experimental subjects, was found in a plant being investigated as a source of anti-diabetic drugs.

Brian Furman and Roger Walgh have an Pounds 81,400 grant from Alizyme Therapeutics to research the chemical at the Strathclyde Institute of Drug Research. Dr Furman was keen to point out that the research was at an early stage. They have isolated an active molecule from the plant but Dr Furman said that they do not yet know how it works: "Appetite suppression seems to be one component."

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