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Mol Med Today. 1999 Jun;5(6):250-6.

The role of agouti-related protein in regulating body weight.

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  • 1Stanford University School of Medicine, B275 Beckman Center, Stanford, CA 94305-5428, USA.

Erratum in

  • Mol Med Today 1999 Aug;5(8):336.


Defects in signaling by leptin, a hormone produced primarily by adipose tissue that informs the brain of the body's energy reserves, result in obesity in mice and humans. However, the majority of obese humans do not have abnormalities in leptin or its receptor but instead exhibit leptin resistance that could result from defects in downstream mediators of leptin action. Recently, two potential downstream mediators, agouti-related protein (Agrp) and its receptor, the melanocortin-4 receptor (Mc4r), have been identified. Agrp and Mc4r are excellent candidates for human disorders of body weight regulation and represent promising targets for pharmacological intervention in the treatment of these disorders.

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