Régulation transcriptionnelle du syndrome métabolique

Chercheurs boursiers - Junior 1 | Concours 2012-2013

Jennifer Estall

Institut de recherches cliniques de Montréal (IRCM)


Domaine : Nutrition et métabolisme

One in 10 Canadians suffers from liver disease, which is often caused by having too much fat stored in the liver. Fatty liver disease has few symptoms, but over time leads to irreversible liver damage. Having excess liver fat increases the chance of liver failure and the risk of developing other disease such as diabetes and heart problems. The cause of fatty liver disease is unknown, but being overweight dramatically increases ones chances of being affected. Diets high in fat and sugar and low physical activity both contribute to the rising incidence, particularly in children. It is believed that children with this disease will face significant health problems in the future if not treated early on. There is no cure for the disease and diagnosis is difficult, mainly because we do not understand what triggers it. We have shown that low levels of a protein called PGC-1alpha in liver may cause or worsen fatty liver disease and our new studies will help to understand how this occurs. Thus, by identifying what causes fatty liver, we can establish new methods for early detection and develop more effective treatments.