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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of phenylpropanolamine on energy expenditure and weight loss in overweight women.

The effect of phenylpropanolamine (PPA), a noncatecholamine sympathomimetic weight-loss agent, on energy expenditure (EE) and substrate oxidation was measured in a respiratory chamber in 24 overweight women after 4 d of treatment (PPA or placebo) during weight maintenance and after 7 wk of treatment on a hypoenergetic diet (70% of measured baseline 24-h EE). Twelve women (37 +/- 2 y, 74 +/- 6 kg, 33 +/- 1% body fat) were randomly assigned to the PPA group [75 mg osmotic release oral system (OROS)-PPA/d] and 12 (mean +/- SEM: 38 +/- 2 y, 79 +/- 1 kg, 37 +/- 1% body fat) to the placebo group. Baseline measurements of 24-h EE (7849 +/- 226 vs 7834 +/- 142 kJ/d), basal metabolic rate (BMR) and 24-h respiratory quotient (RQ) were comparable between PPA and placebo groups. After 4 d of treatment, there was no significant effect of PPA on 24-h EE, BMR, and 24-h RQ compared with placebo. Over the 7-wk diet period, however, the PPA group (n = 8) had greater weight loss than the placebo group (n = 10): -5.0 +/- 0.5 vs -3.0 +/- 0.4 kg (P < 0.05). The changes in 24-h EE and 24-h RQ over the 7 wk were not different between the groups. We conclude that weight loss is enhanced by OROS-PPA, but this change was not explained by changes in 24-h EE or 24-h RQ. The small number of subjects may have hindered detection of subtle differences in energy metabolism.[1]


  1. Effect of phenylpropanolamine on energy expenditure and weight loss in overweight women. Alger, S., Larson, K., Boyce, V.L., Seagle, H., Fontvieille, A.M., Ferraro, R.T., Rising, R., Ravussin, E. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. (1993) [Pubmed]
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