Canadian scientists have found that nobiletin, a substance found in high concentrations in tangerines, thwarted obesity and the onset of diabetes in lab mice. The researchers at the University of Western Ontario fed the mice a high-sugar, high-fat diet that mimicked the diet of many people in Western societies. One group of animals became obese, developing fatty livers and elevated levels of cholesterol and insulin-typical precursors to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. But a second group of mice, given the flavonoid nobiletin, did not develop the symptoms of the first group. The nobiletin prevented fatty buildup in the liver by blocking the genes that control the production of fat.