Taming menopause? Antibody might restrain obesity, osteoporosis risks

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Menopause often has some pretty negative effects on women. Their risks of heart disease, osteoporosis and obesity all increase, to say nothing of the hot flashes that can make life a misery.

A recent report in Nature provides preliminary evidence that a means of dealing with both obesity and bone loss might just be in the pipeline — an antibody that blocks receptors for the hormone FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone).

While mice don’t undergo menopause the way that women do, one can mimic the menopausal milieu by removing the rodents’ ovaries — no ovaries, no estrogen, higher levels of FSH.

The investigators produced antibodies to the mice’s FSH receptors, which would prevent the hormone from binding to those receptors and thus block whatever effects it would have in various tissues. They compared the effects of the anti FSH receptor (FSHr) antibody in normal and ovariectomized mice with those of mice treated with a different antibody (goat IgG) which would be inactive in mice.

Mice treated with antibody, when fed with normal chow, showed a reduction in body weight — their fat mass was reduced and lean body mass increased.

While a mouse is not a woman, these results imply that blocking the FSH receptor in peri- and menopausal women might be effective in blocking the accretion of visceral fat that so often accompanies menopause, as well as protecting bone.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Antibody Could Help With Post-Menopausal Issues, Mouse Study Suggests

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