searching for the secrets of how calorie-restricted diets increase
longevity are reporting discovery of proteins in the fat cells of human
volunteers that change as pounds drop off. The proteins could become
markers for monitoring or boosting the effectiveness of
calorie-restricted diets — the only scientifically proven way of
extending life span in animals. Their study appears online in ACS’ Journal of Proteome Research.
Edwin Mariman and colleagues note that scientists have long known that
sharply restricting intake of calories while maintaining good nutrition
makes animals live longer and stay healthier. Recent studies suggest
that people may gain similar benefits. But scientists know little about
how these diets work in humans, particularly their effects on cells
that store fat.
The new study focused on proteins in abdominal subcutaneous fat cells
from a group of overweight people before and after they went on a
five-week-long calorie-restricted diet. The volunteers each lost an
average of 21 pounds. Scientists identified changes in the levels of 6
proteins as the volunteers shed pounds, including proteins that tell
the body to store fat. These proteins could serve as important markers
for improving or tracking the effectiveness of therapies involving
calorie-restricted diets, they say.
— News release courtesy of American Chemical Society