Losing the love handles may be skin patch away
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.