Pillola anti-obesità, forse tornerà presto

Potrebbe essere presto in arrivo la nuova pillola anti-obesità, un farmaco anti-grasso simile a quello ritirato dal commercio nel 2008 ma che, a differenza del primo (Rimonabant), non agisce sul cervello ma solo sul resto del corpo. Questo è quanto emerso da una ricerca, pubblicata sull’ultimo numero della  rivista scientifica Cell metabolism, e condotta da un team di scienziati europei coordinati dall’endocrinologo dell’Università di Bologna Uberto Pagotto. Si riaccendono quindi le speranze delle persone affette da obesità che non hanno potuto avvalersi con successo del farmaco precedente a causa dei suoi sgradevoli effetti collaterali quali ansia e depressione.

Come spiega Pagotto:

Il risultato segna un punto di svolta. Senza azione sul cervello, si elimina infatti il problema degli effetti collaterali sulla psiche. Si tratta quindi di usare farmaci che non vi penetrino, come quelli recentemente sviluppati e già testati con successo sugli animali. Se si dimostrano validi anche sull’uomo il gioco è fatto. Dopo il ritiro, un mese fa, anche dell’altro importante principio attivo in campo contro l’obesità, la sibutramina, la novità risulta ancora più interessante

Poichè i farmaci per perdere peso finora sperimentati agiscono sul sistema nervoso disattivando alcuni recettori cerebrali, il team di ricercatori ha simulato l’azione di farmaci simili al Rimonabant su un campione di circa 180 topi geneticamente modificati in modo da non possedere tali recettori.  Più precisamente, è stato osservato che le cavie che erano prive di tali recettori solo a livello cerebrale se sottoposte a una dieta ricca di grassi rimanevano magre quanto quelle che ne erano del tutto prive, mentre i topi che ne erano normalmente provvisti ingrassavano notevolmente. Gli esperti  hanno quindi concluso che spegnendo i recettori bersaglio solo negli organi periferici, si ottiene comunque il dimangrimento voluto annullando gli effetti collaterali.

Inoltre sembra che l’efficacia di questo tipo di farmaci non sia dovuta al contenimento della fame ma all’induzione di un maggior dispendio energetico a livello degli organi periferici; essi esplicano quindi la propria azione sul metabolismo energetico e, di conseguenza, sul consumo di calorie. In particolare, i topi che non ingrassavano tendevano ad accumulare meno grasso bianco, più difficile da smaltire, e a bruciare più grasso bruno che fornisce invece energia immediata.

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96 commenti su “Pillola anti-obesità, forse tornerà presto”

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