UNAM experts develop weight-loss caffeine gel

Overweight and obesity are increasingly common among the Mexican population

UNAM experts develop weight-loss caffeine gel
English 28/07/2020 12:57 Mexico City Actualizada 13:22

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Researchers from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) developed a gel and a skin patch with caffeine properties to fight overweight and obesity, one of the conditions that affect most of the Mexican population and that, with time, could unleash chronic degenerative diseases.

UNAM experts based their pharmacological formula on caffeine since it has a lipolytic effect, an element that is able to dissolve fat in certain amounts. That is why they opted to use a patch through which the skin is able to absorb the properties required for efficient results.

José Juan Escobar Chávez, a researcher from the Cuautitlán School of Higher Studies, said that the use of both the gel and the skin patch will only help control the lack of weight balance, hence, it is necessary to follow a healthy diet with physical activity and other practices that contribute to good health.

As of the skin patch, the head of the Transdermal Systems laboratory of the Cuautitlán Ixcalli School explained that it is a transdermal film the skin is able to absorb, just as capsules that contain drugs: “It’s a kind of bubble with gel that has a permeable sheet that sticks to the skin and allows the transfer of the drug.”

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In addition, he said the patch must be put in parts of the body where there is no hair, for example, the forearms, the back, or the abdomen. The adhesive is already patent-pending and the UNAM is waiting for the exclusivity of its production and distribution.

Through a statement, the UNAM mentioned an unhealthy weight could cause more serious health conditions in patients, such as diabetes, high blood pressures, and high cholesterol levels in blood and triglycerides.

“It’s important to attack these problems from the medical perspective because new generations show them from very early ages. In addition, the situation affects both the country’s health system and the economy,” asserted Escobar Chávez.

According to the 2018 figures of the National Survey on Health and Nutrition (ENSANUT), seven out of every 10 Mexicans are overweight and obese. This problem has called the attention of experts since new generations present a high body mass index at increasingly earlier ages.

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Currently, UNAM scientists are waiting for the authorization to begin trials in animals, for they already have the formulation and optimization of the gel and the skin patch, with which they determined their size and the proper therapeutic dose for its administration.

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