Print

WJAR-TV/NBC 10 goes inside Silvia Corvera’s ‘fat lab’

By Sarah Willey

UMass Medical School Communications

February 01, 2019
  UMass Medical School diabetes researcher Silvia Corvera, MD, speak to WJAR reporter Barbara Morse Silva
 

UMass Medical School diabetes researcher Silvia Corvera, MD, speak to WJAR reporter Barbara Morse Silva

Is there a way to turn bad fat into good fat? In a health report from WJAR-TV/NBC 10 of Providence, reporter Barbara Morse Silva explains research by Silvia Corvera, MD, into transforming white fat into beige to harness its ability to burn energy, accelerate metabolism and fight disease.

“Fat is fantastic. We all hate it, right? We don’t want to have a lot of fat but it actually keeps us healthy,” said Dr. Corvera, the Endowed Chair in Diabetes Research and professor of molecular medicine, in the segment. “It turns out that people that carry fat in their legs and arms are actually protected from metabolic disease.”

In 2016, Corvera published in the journal Nature Medicine the method she developed to generate new human fat cells, particularly beneficial beige fat, from precursor cells present in white fat. When these cells were implanted in mice with diabetes, the metabolism of the mice improved.

“We can take fat from any part of your body, make stem cells and then tell them to make brown fat,” said Corvera. “We’ve been able to show in a mouse model that if we take these human cells and make them brown and we put them in the mouse, we improve the mouse metabolism.”

Learn more in the full WJAR-TV NBC Health Check segment.

Related stories on UMassMedNow:
Hudson Hoagland Society celebrates 33rd Annual Meeting
Silvia Corvera, Michael Czech receive $2.5M grant to advance potential therapy for type 2 diabetes
UMMS researchers illuminate origins, benefits of ‘beige’ fat

Additional Resources
click to open search panel