Functional characterisation of the novel adipocyte lean gene thiosulphate sulphurtransferase: developing next-generation obesity therapeutics


  • Dr Nicholas Morton

    University of Edinburgh

Project summary

Obesity is a major global health problem. Its chronic disease complications (type 2 diabetes, hypertension, atherosclerosis and certain cancers) are the major causes of morbidity and mortality in developed and, increasingly, developing countries. Dr Morton’s vision is that genes promoting healthy leanness in the face of genetic and intense environmental obesity-causing pressures represent important biology and an untapped source for anti-obesity therapeutics. He has identified the enzyme thiosulphate sulphurtransferase (TST) as one possible candidate for driving healthy leanness. Dr Morton’s work will investigate the mechanism of action of TST. He will specifically test the hypothesis that TST augments mitochondrial function, reduces mitochondrial oxidative/metabolic stresses and thereby improves adipocyte function and release of anti-diabetic adipokines. It is hoped that by understanding the role of TST, it may be exploited to ultimately treat obesity and its related metabolic problems.