The protein of interest is the alpha-2/delta-1 and thus far, it has not been linked to obesity. However, a professor that goes by the name of Maribel Rios Ph.D has discovered a link between alpha-2/delta-1 and another protein called brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein that is understood to have a major part to play in appetite suppression.
It is well understood that low levels of BDNF can lead to overeating and obesity in mice, and it is now thought that this probably translates to humans too. The interesting finding is this…the alpha-2/delta-1 is evidently necessary for the normal functioning of BDNF meaning we could harness this and apply a new directive for the treatment of obesity! The findings of the study found that low levels of BDNF were directly associated with a reduced function of alpha-2/delta-1 in the hypothalamus region of the brain (a region that is synonymous with appetite and weight).
Science Daily, (2014). Your source for the latest research news. Neuroscience study uncovers new player in obesity. Retrieved 10th January, 2013, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140107215152.htm