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Scoperte 74 regioni DNA legate a metabolismo e chili di troppo

12 gennaio 2022 – Una recente ricerca sul DNA potrebbe aprire a nuove scoperte sulla predisposizione ereditaria all’eccesso di peso. Un team di scienziati ha infatti identificato 74 nuove regioni genomiche connesse al metabolismo e quindi al rischio di sovrappeso e obesità. Lo studio, pubblicato su Metabolites, è stato condotto da Cristina Menni del King’s College di Londra. Ha coinvolto 8.809 persone a cui sono state analizzati campioni di sangue e misurata la concentrazione plasmatica di 722 molecole. E’ stato anche esaminato l’intero genoma di ciascun partecipante alla ricerca di regioni del DNA che influenzassero la concentrazione plasmatica dei metaboliti. Gli esperti hanno così identificato 202 regioni genomiche la cui sequenza è direttamente collegata alla concentrazione di 478 molecole nel sangue. Di queste regioni, 74 non erano mai state collegate al metabolismo.
“I nostri risultati – sostiene Menni – potrebbero avere diverse implicazioni pratiche. Il metabolismo è alla base di molti aspetti della salute umana. La scoperta potrebbe aiutare a capire diverse malattie. Alcuni dei metaboliti indagati in questo studio sono direttamente legati al peso corporeo individuale e potrebbero aiutare a capire le radici dell’obesità in alcune persone – continua l’esperta -. In futuro questi risultati potrebbero aiutare a sviluppare approcci per mantenere un peso sano tenendo conto del profilo genetico di una persona”. “L’obesità è una delle malattie più diffuse al mondo – spiega Massimo Mangino, coautore del lavoro – tuttavia c’è ancora tanto da capire sui suoi meccanismi biologici di base. I nostri risultati potrebbero contribuire a svelarne alcuni. Gli studi di genetica sono davvero promettenti per scoprire nuove terapie contro l’obesità”.

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