The link between obesity and kidney cancer is well documented, but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Stemmer et al. now uncover some important candidate factors in a study showing that the severity of renal pathology correlates with adiposity in Wistar rats. They compared three groups: lean rats on a standard diet, rats on a high-fat diet (HFD) that were susceptible to diet-induced obesity (DIO), and rats on a HFD that were partially resistant to DIO. Rats susceptible to DIO had the highest incidence of early-stage kidney cancer, and pro-tumorigenic pathways involving STAT3 and mTOR seemed to be involved in its development. Kidneys in DIO-susceptible mice also showed signs of inflammation, such as white-blood-cell infiltration and cytokine production. These data introduce a new model for studying the link between obesity and kidney cancer, and provide early data on potential therapeutic targets. Page 627
- Written by editorial staff. © 2012. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
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