Study Goals and Findings

Obesity has reached epidemic proportions around the world. Many serious health issues, such as high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, are closely linked with being overweight or obese. Fortunately, many of the effects of obesity are reversible, as weight loss has been proven to lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol, and prevent the development of adult-onset diabetes. While it is generally assumed that the health benefits of weight loss persist as long as weight loss is maintained and are reversed completely once weight is regained, this assumption remains untested. Virtually no data has been published addressing the biological effects of persistent weight loss maintenance beyond 18 months.

The Weight Loss Maintenance Trial (WLM) was a National Institutes of Health-sponsored randomized trial that investigated strategies for maintaining weight loss for 30 months after an intensive weight loss intervention. Horizon 1 investigators used the stored samples and clinical database available from WLM to assess biological factors that influence weight loss and weight regain. These research efforts have led to published findings that correlate the presence of certain metabolites with insulin resistance. A more nuanced and thorough understanding of the role genetics and environment play in weight loss may help reverse the rise of the obesity epidemic.

Meet the Principal Investigator
svati shah
Svati Shah, MD, MHS
Related Publications and Print Materials
  1. Batch BC, Shah SH, Newgard CB, Turer CB, Haynes C, Bain JR, Muehlbauer M, Patel MJ, Stevens RD, Appel LJ, Newby LK, Svetkey LP. Branched chain amino acids are novel biomarkers for discrimination of metabolic wellness. Metabolism; 04 Feb 2013 (10.1016/j.metabol.2013.01.007).
  2. Shah SH, Crosslin DR, Haynes CS, Nelson S, Turer CB, Stevens RD, Muehlbauer MJ, Wenner BR, Bain JR, Laferrere B, Gorroochurn P, Teixeira J, Brantley PJ, Stevens VJ, Hollis JF, Appel LJ, Lien LF, Batch B, Newgard CB, Svetkey LP. Branched Chain Amino Acid Levels are Associated with Improvement in Insulin Resistance with Weight LossDiabetologia. (2012) 55:321–330.
  3. Newgard CB, An J, Bain JR, Muehlbauer MJ, Stevens RD, Lien LF, Haqq AM, Shah SH, Arlotto M, Slentz CA, Rochon J. Gallup D, Ilkayeva O, Wenner BR, Yancy WE, Eisenson H, Musante G, Surwit R, Millington DS, Butler MD, Svetkey LP. A Branched-Chain Amino Acid-Related Metabolic Signature that Differentiates Obese and Lean Humans and Contributes to Insulin Resistance. Cell Metabolism. 2009 Apr; 9(4):311-26.
  4. Shah SH, Crosslin DR, Nelson S, Haynes C, Boling CL, Bain J, Muehlbauer M, Stevens RD, Brantley PJ, Stevens V, Hollis JF, Appel LJ, Lien L, Newgard CB, Svetkey LPMetabolomic Profiles Are Associated with Baseline Insulin Resistance and Improvement in Insulin Resistance with Weight Loss in the WLM Trial. Presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) Annual Meeting, Orlando, FL, November 2009.

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