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Front Horm Res. 2008;36:198-211. doi: 10.1159/000115366.

The role of AMP-activated protein kinase in obesity.

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Department of Endocrinology, Barts and the London, Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of London, London, UK.


AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a major regulator of energy metabolism at both the cell and at the whole body level. Numerous genetic and obesity models as well as human studies have suggested a role for AMPK in the physiological regulation of fatty acid and glucose metabolism, and in the regulation of appetite. Changes in AMPK activity have been reported in obesity, type 2 diabetes, the metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease, which jointly represent a major health and economical problem worldwide. Whether AMPK changes are one of the causes or the consequence of these pathological conditions remains a matter of debate, but AMPK clearly represents a major potential pharmacological target in the treatment of these conditions.

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