Emory researchers led by Keqiang Ye have demonstrated that a molecule, 7,8-DHF, found in some plants can combat weight gain induced by a high-fat diet but only in female mices. The researchers revealed that an equivalent diet pill in humans would allow people to maintain a healthy weight, despite a high-fat diet and the pill would burn calories without affecting appetite.
The research has shown that female mice treated with 7,8-DHF could consume a high-fat diet without any weight gain. 7,8-DHF was found to increase energy expenditure by acting on muscle cells of the mice, without suppressing appetite.
Ye said further investigation was necessary to explore why it selectively burned fat in the female mice.
The study will appear in the journal Chemistry and Biology.