This study directly addresses two important health problems, obesity and fatty liver disease, called Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). Over 70% of the adult population in the U.S. are overweight or obese as are 20-25% of children and adolescents. Obesity may soon overtake smoking as the leading cause of death in the U.S. About 20% to 30% obese adults in the U.S. have excess fat accumulation in the liver. About 10% of these individuals (2% to 3% of all adults) are estimated to meet current diagnostic criteria for NAFLD. NAFLD can progress to cirrhosis in up to one third of these cases. The incidence of NAFLD increases with an increase in body mass index (BMI). BMI increases in proportion to weight increase. Although NAFLD is the second cause of liver transplantation, weight loss has been shown to improve NAFLD.
Investigators interested in the topic:
- Christopher Still, DO, Director Obesity Institute
- George Argyopoulos, PhD, Staff Scientist
- Peter Benotti, MD, Senior Clinical Research Investigator
- Jon Gabrielsen, MD, General Surgery
- Anthony Petrick, MD, General Surgery
- William Strodel, MD General Surgery
- Craig Wood, MS, Biostatistician
- Glenn Gerhard, MD, Consultant
Gerhard, GS., Chu, X., Wood, GC., Gerhard, GM., Benotti, P., Petrick, AT., Gabrielsen, J., Strodel, WE., Still, CD., Argyropoulos, G.: Next-generation sequence analysis of genes associated with obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease-related cirrhosis in extreme obesity. Human Heredity 2013; 75(2-4):144-51.
Gorden, A., Yang, R., Yerges-Armstrong, LM., Ryan, LM., Speliotes, E., Borecki, IB., Harris, TB., Chu, X., Wood, GC., Still, CD., Shuldiner, AR., Gerhard, GC.: Genetic Variation at NCAN Locus Is Associated with Inflammation and Fibrosis in Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in Morbid Obesity. Human Heredity 2013; 75(1): 34-43.
Kumashiro, N., Erion, D., Zhang, D., Kahn, M., Beddow, S., Chu, X., Still, C., Gerhard, G., Han, X., Dziura, J., Petersen, K., Samuel, V., Shulman, G.: Cellular Mechanism of Insulin Resistance in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) 2011; 108(39): 16381-16385.