Proposed mechanisms of action

HCA is a competitive inhibitor of ATP-citrate lyase, an extra-mitochondrial enzyme involved in the initial steps of de novo lipogenesis. In this way, HCA reduces the conversion of citrate into acetyl coenzyme A, a primary step in the formation of fatty acids in the liver. Increased glycogen is produced in the liver in the presence of HCA and this may mediate satiety signals, reducing appetite (Preuss et al., 2004a). In addition to this, according to Downs et al. (2005) HCA as the calcium potassium salt induces an increase in serotonin release and serotonin receptor reuptake inhibition (SRRI). Serotonin regulation has been proposed as a mechanism of appetite suppression.

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