The Labrador retriever, known as one of the greediest breeds of dog, is more likely to overeat and become obese than other breeds partly because of its genes, scientists at Cambridge University say.
The gene plays a crucial role in controlling how the brain recognizes hunger and the feeling of being full after eating.
Researchers screened more than 300 Labradors kept as pets or assistance dogs for obesity genes in the study.
The team found that a change in a gene known as POMC was strongly linked with weight, obesity and appetite in Labradors and Flat-Coated retrievers.
"What we have found is that some Labradors get fat because they have a deletion in a gene within their brain, and this particular gene plays a role in sensing how much fat they have in their body, so they keep eating to try to get fatter." a human geneticist from the University of Cambridge said.
In terms of humankind, there are some rare obese people who lack a very similar part of the POMC gene to the one that is missing in the dogs.
retriever：名詞，獵犬。例句：My parents adopted a golden retriever when I was 5. （我爸媽在我5歲那年，領養一隻黃金獵犬。）
screen：動詞，審查；選拔。例句：The production team screened hundreds of amateur singers to select a potential rising star. （製作單位篩選數百名業餘歌手，選出有潛力的明日之星。）