Tuesday, 6 September 2011

FTO - A Gene Contributing to Human Obesity

FTO (Fat mass-and obesity-associated gene) is the responsible gene for mouse ‘fused toes’ mutation. Ubiquitous over expression of FTO in mice results in increased food consumption and leads to a dose-dependent increase in obesity. An association between FTO genotype and type 2 diabetes has been confirmed.

FTO mRNA is widely expressed in different tissues, especially in the brain, but also in skeletal muscles and adipose tissue. In the mice brain, Fto is highly expressed in hypothalamic nuclei that control eating behaviour.

The presence of the FTO rs9939609 A-allele was found to be positively correlated with other symptoms of the metabolic syndrome, including higher fasting insulin, glucose, and triglycerides, and lower HDL-cholesterol.

Research also indicates that FTO, apart from correlating with obesity, also is essential for normal development in humans and might have different roles in different tissues.

Figure: Immunohistochemical staining of FTO with anti-FTO (human), mAb (FT403-2) (Prod. No. AG-20A-0075) in brain, hypothalamus and paraventricular nucleus (5~10 μg/ml).

This antibody has been tested in immunohistochemistry, analyzed by an anatomic pathologist and validated for use in IHC applications against formalinfixed, paraffin-embedded human tissues. The image shows the localization of the antibody as the precipitated red signal, with a hematoxylin purple nuclear counterstain (40x).

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