Researchers have discovered a drug that has the potential to prevent obesity in children born to overweight mothers.

Previous studies have shown that children born to overweight mothers may have an increased risk of developing obesity which is believed to be a major cause of various diseases.

The new study conducted by University of New South Wales on mice showed that NMN drug increases energy metabolism in children which helps in reducing the negative effects of maternal obesity.

NMN increases the function of mitochondria -- the powerhouse of our cells and makes energy, which produces similar effects when one exercise.

"Our study offers some promise that we may have another approach that might be appropriate to prevent obesity in children from overweight mothers," Margaret Morris, Professor, and Head of Pharmacology in the School of Medical Sciences at University of New South Wales in Australia, said.

For the study, published in Scientific Reports, female mice whose mothers were obese were given either a normal diet or a high-fat diet along with treadmill exercise for nine weeks or NMN for 18 days.

The researchers found that both the NMN treatment and exercise reduced the negative metabolic consequences of maternal obesity in the offspring.

Results revealed that an amount of body fat was reduced and some improvement in glucose tolerance was also observed in the mice.

"What is really encouraging about our findings is that a short-term NMN treatment of animals from obese mothers had the same benefit as their siblings who exercised," Morris said.