Everyone struggling against obesity wishes for a safe, effective treatment to keep them from putting on the pounds. But, as this ScienCentral News video reports, a natural hormone thought to do just that is turning out to be tougher to test than was hoped for.

In 2002, researchers from Imperial College in London discovered that a natural hormone made in the gut called PYY3-36 appears to signal to the brain that the stomach is full. They reported it reduced food intake and body weight in rodents, and in a small study in humans.

“By giving this hormone we naturally cause the brain to feel less like eating, and this is an important breakthrough in the possibilities for treating obesity,” Steve Bloom, a researcher at Hammersmith Hospital and professor at Imperial College, told ScienCentral last year. “This is a very interesting discovery because for once, the scientist has found something that means an active treatment quite quickly. And what we are hoping is that we will be able to go to a direct demonstration of real weight loss and no side effects.”

More here.