Scientists at Scripps Research have come up with an unexpected finding of a protein that is highly expressed in fat tissue. The study has opened the door to critical new understandings about obesity, metabolism and potentially other diseases. The results of the study were published in the Journal Nature. The signalling protein, known as PGRMC2, had not been extensively studied in the past. Short for "progesterone receptor membrane component 2," it had been detected in the uterus, liver and several areas of the body. The team built on their recent discovery that PGRMC2 binds to and releases an essential molecule called heme. Recently in the spotlight for its role in providing flavour to the plant-based Impossible Burger, heme holds a much more significant role in the body.