A compound called Lorcaserin helps overweight people lose about five per cent of their body weight with few side effects.
According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, while the weight reduction owing to Lorcaserin is modest, the drug could have fewer side effects than others.
The drug acts on a specific subset of receptors for the chemical messenger serotonin. These receptors play a role in satiety, the feeling of fullness. “This is the first tailor-made molecule to target receptors involved in producing satiety and reducing caloric intake,” said Arne Astrup, a physician at the University of Copenhagen.
Several weight-loss drugs have been pulled from the market or abandoned in late-stage development because of dangerous side effects. Lorcaserin, however, was designed to target a subset of serotonin receptors called 5-HTC2, and as it targets brain receptors specifically, Lorcaserin has very few side effects.
The bottom line: Lorcaserin might just be the wonder drug that makes you lose weight with minimal side effects.