DO flame retardants make people fat?
Andrea C. Arel of the University of New Hampshire in Durham and her colleagues worked with a mix of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) that was dominated by five-bromine--or penta--molecules. The group fed the mix to some justweaned male rats in daily doses of 14 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. Other rats got a normal diet with none of the PBDE mixture. The researchers analyzed fat cells from half of the animals in each group after 2 weeks and from the other half after another 2 weeks.
Differences between bromine-treated and untreated animals emerged only at 4 weeks. The dosed animals' fat cells were mobilizing lipids 25 percent faster than were cells in the other rats. Increased fat circulation in the body is characteristic of obesity, notes team leader Gale Carey.
Fat cells from animals treated with PBDEs for 4 weeks also exhibited roughly 65 percent less glucose oxidation, a measure of blood sugar's ability to enter cells. Carey describes this change as a"crude measure of insulin resistance," which typically precedes development of type 2 diabetes.
When the researchers put the PBDE mixture in incubated colonies of fat cells from other mice, no similar changes occurred. 'You need the whole animal to see the effects, Carey concludes.--J.R.
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Article Type:||Brief article|
|Date:||Apr 15, 2006|
|Previous Article:||Breakfast trends.|
|Next Article:||Alcohol spurs cancer growth.|