Is Leptin a 'Thrifty' Hormone in Muscle and Fat?

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Science  10 Mar 2000:
Vol. 287, Issue 5459, pp. 1739
DOI: 10.1126/science.287.5459.1739

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Decades ago, researchers proposed a "thrifty genotype" hypothesis, which holds that early on, animals and people evolved mechanisms that allowed them to hoard calories--as fat--in times of abundance in preparation for famine later on. Recent work suggests that the hormone leptin, despite having won media fame for its role as a "fat buster" (see main text), may contribute to this metabolic thriftiness.