Five studies about the environment and obesity (and a research centre)

September 7, 2009 at 1:06 pm | Posted in ReadingList | Leave a comment
Animal experiments help us understand the biological mechanisms behind obesity - and how they can go wrong.

Animal experiments help us understand the biological mechanisms behind obesity - and how they can go wrong.

In issue 18 of H&E, we are looking at why there is growing interest in how environmental exposures to contaminants could be related to obesity. We have collected five papers of interest below (apologies for the incomplete referencing, but the full references are really hard to read off a screen).

Smink et al. Exposure to hexachlorobenzene during pregnancy increases the risk of overweight in children aged 6 years (Acta Paediatrica, 2008)

“Prenatal exposure to HCB is associated with an increase in BMI and weight at age 6.5 years. Further studies with larger samples and longer follow-up are needed to confirm these results.”

Baillie-Hamilton. Chemical toxins: a hypothesis to explain the global obesity epidemic. (J Altern Complement Med, 2002)

“Because the obesity epidemic occurred relatively quickly, it has been suggested that environmental causes instead of genetic factors maybe largely responsible. […] This paper presents a hypothesis that the current level of human exposure to these chemicals may have damaged many of the body’s natural weight-control mechanisms.”

Newbold et al. Developmental Exposure to Endocrine Disruptors and the Obesity Epidemic, (Reprod Toxicol. 2007)

“We describe an animal model of developmental exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES), a potent perinatal endocrine disruptor with estrogenic activity, to study mechanisms involved in programming an organism for obesity.”

Irigaray et al. Benzo[a]pyrene impairs -adrenergic stimulation of adipose tissue lipolysis and causes weight gain in mice (FEBS Journal, 2006)

Heindel. Endocrine Disruptors and the Obesity Epidemic, (Toxicological Sciences, 2003)

“The effect of exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals on the initiation or exacerbation of obesity, which may significantly alter the perception of the etiology of obesity and impact intervention and prevention efforts, is an important emerging area needing even further research emphasis.”

The International Society for Developmental Origins of Health and Disease is one body coordinating research in this area:

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