Los­ing the love han­dles may be skin patch away

The Courier-Mail - - NEWS -

RE­SEARCHERS have de­vel­oped a skin patch that can melt fat in mice, and fu­ture tests will re­veal whether it could treat obe­sity and di­a­betes in peo­ple.

The patch uses nan­otech­nol­ogy to raise the body’s me­tab­o­lism and trans­form en­ergy-stor­ing white fat into en­ergy-burn­ing brown fat, ac­cord­ing to the re­port in ACS Nano, a pub­li­ca­tion of the Amer­i­can Chem­i­cal So­ci­ety.

Af­ter four weeks, mice had a 20 per cent re­duc­tion in fat where the patch was ap­plied.

“Many peo­ple will no doubt be ex­cited to learn that we may be able to of­fer a non-in­va­sive al­ter­na­tive to li­po­suc­tion for re­duc­ing love han­dles,” said study co-au­thor Li Qiang, as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor of pathol­ogy and cell bi­ol­ogy at Columbia Univer­sity Med­i­cal Cen­tre in New York.

“Our patch may pro­vide a safe and ef­fec­tive means of treat­ing obe­sity and re­lated meta­bolic dis­or­ders such as di­a­betes.”

The patches ap­peared to de­liver the drugs di­rectly to the fat tis­sue, avoid­ing com­pli­ca­tions in ro­dents, Prof Qiang said.

They were ap­plied to the mice’s ab­domens and were re­placed every three days for a to­tal of four weeks. Treated mice showed 20 per cent less fat in the af­fected area than mice given empty patches.

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