Obesity proposed to be treated with charged nanoparticles

Researchers at Columbia School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Irving Medical Center

Columbia University published twostudies demonstrating that positively charged nanoparticles have a healing effect on fat cells. This method does not destroy fat like liposuction, but rebuilds body tissues to function normally.

Researchers have found that adipose tissuecontains a large amount of negatively charged extracellular matrices (ECM) to hold fat cells. They suggested that this negatively charged network of the extracellular matrix could become a kind of highway system for positively charged molecules.

An illustration showing how cationic nanomaterials affect fat cells. Image: Baoding Huang et al., Biomaterials

In their experiment, they took positivelycharged nanomedical third-generation polyamidoamine (P-G3) and injected into obese mice. The nanoparticles quickly spread throughout the tissue. To the surprise of scientists, as the material spread, the structure of fat actively changed, as a result, the mice lost weight.

In these two studies, biologists found thatthe cationic material, P-G3, can do an interesting thing with fat cells - by helping the formation of new fat cells, it also suppresses the unhealthy accumulation of lipids in enlarged fat cells. As a result, the mice had more metabolically healthy, young, small fat cells, such as those found in newborns and athletes.

The researchers found that this uncoupling function of P-G3 is also preserved in human fat biopsies, indicating the potential for translation in humans.

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On the cover: an artistic illustration of how nanoparticles work. Image: Nicoletta Barolini/Columbia University