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 OBESITY
NAASO's Newsletter
. Volume 2: Number 7 
July 2004 
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Thank you to all who submitted abstracts for the 2004 NAASO Annual Meeting. NAASO received more than 930 abstracts at the deadline - that's a 33% increase over last year's submission!
Abstracts are now being reviewed. All corresponding authors will be notified of abstract acceptance in mid- August. Accepted abstracts will be printed in the October Obesity Research Annual Meeting Abstract Supplement.
Again, thank you to all authors, especially those braving the traffic on the submission site during the final day!
NAASO is extremely pleased with your support.

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  • Message from the President
  • Annual Meeting Updates
  • Positions Wanted
  • Around NAASO
  • Regional Notes

  • Annual Meeting Updates
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    Online Registration Now Open
    Make your plans to attend the NAASO Annual Scientific Meeting, November 14 - 18, Las Vegas. NAASO Members receive a substantial discount on Annual Meeting Registration. Register by August 18 to take advantage of early bird savings. Registration includes admission to all oral and poster sessions, symposia, debates, exhibits, opening reception, refreshment breaks and conference materials.
    Not a NAASO Member? Now is a good time to join. Contact membership@naaso. org or call the NAASO office at 301.563.6526.

    Looking to Exhibit?
    Exhibitor information is now online! View the floor plan at Caesar's palace, and download the application, contract and exhibitor prospectus. A list of current exhibitors is also available. Join us in Las Vegas and showcase your company's services and products to qualified obesity professionals. Contact Tricia Cavallo for more information and to reserve your booth space.

    Corporate Sponsorship Opportunities
    Put your company's name in front of more than 1,800 obesity experts!
    A wide variety of sponsorship opportunities are available. Your company can select an event, lecture, workshop or symposia. For a more detailed list of opportunities available, visit our Sponsorship webpage or contact Margaret Castillo.

    NAASO Gala
    When registering for Annual Meeting, don't forget to reserve your ticket to the NAASO Gala, Tuesday, November 16th. Tickets are $65 per person. It's never too early to start planning your Gala attire. This year, come dressed in clothing that represents your favorite decade of music. Are you a 50's kind of person, or a groovy 60's dude? How about a 70's disco queen? Punk, anyone?

    Visit our Annual Meeting page often »

    Positions Wanted
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    Now is a great time for student/post-doc members to take advantage of our free Positions Wanted service on the NAASO Website. Need part time work in the fall? Are you relocating over the summer?

    To post your ad, send an e-mail with your particular details to jobads@naaso.org. We will even link to your C.V. -- at no cost to you.

    If you will be hiring students in your institution or organization, don't forget to check our Postions Wanted page first!

    Take a look at NAASO's Postion Wanted Webpage »

    Around NAASO
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    NAASO Welcomes New Staff Members
    Ann Marie Starzyk has just joined the Boston Editorial Office as Editorial Assistant to Deborah Moskowitz. Ann Marie, a long-time Boston resident, comes to us after having worked for 20 years with the Boston Red Sox, most recently as the Manager of Special Writing Projects. She is a welcome addition to our office.

    The new voice on the phone at the NAASO Silver Spring office belongs to Julie Strother, Executive Assistant. Julie has extensive administrative experience and was most recently employed by a computer systems firm. Julie is in the process of moving from Virginia to Maryland - to be closer to the office of course. Welcome, Julie!

    Membership Survey: Your input is needed
    All NAASO Regular Members and Fellows were e-mailed a Member Survey last week. We encourage your survey participation. Your responses will help direct our future programs.
    Please mail your completed survey to the NAASO office by July 31st.
    If you did not recieve your Member Survey, please contact education@naaso.org

    Dr. Louis J. Aronne addresses North Carolina Journalists
    The North Carolina Association for Biomedical Research (NCABR) conducts a series of forums for journalists to provide sound scientific background information on a variety of controversial research issues. In April, NCABR and Research!America co-sponsored a media forum on obesity research with NAASO's President-Elect, Dr. Louis J. Aronne, as program moderator. Dr. Aronne provided insight with his presentation, "Obesity is Much More than a Lifestyle Issue."

    Regional Notes
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    East
    Kathleen Keller reports that Don Schumacher, MD was appointed by the Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina to a committee to advise the State Legislature on issues of Childhood and Adolescent Obesity.

    Dr. Marie-Pierre St. Onge of the New York Obesity Research Center, St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital, accepted a position as an Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama beginning September 1st, 2004.

    Earlier this year, Structure House, the residential weight loss facility in Durham, N.C., founded by NAASO member Dr. Gerard Musante, launched its Diabetes Management Program. It is the first program of its kind to provide a multi-faceted, integrated approach based on psychology to treat and prevent diabetes. For more information visit the Structure House Website

    West
    Judith Stern writes, "Thank you all for your contributions to the July Notes. We would like to include information from Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada, Utah, and Washington in our August notes. Please help."

    California
    Dr. Peter Havel's laboratory in the Department of Nutrition, University of California, Davis received a three-year Research Award from the American Diabetes Association entitled: "Role of adiponectin in the onset and progression of obesity-induced insulin resistance." On June 25 in Washington D.C., Judith S. Stern (University of California, Davis) received the USDA's Secretary's Honor Award "for leading research in nutrition and health, resulting in a better definition of the factors underlying the development of obesity, and new approaches to its prevention."

    Colorado
    Ruth Lytle-Barnaby (Poudre Valley Hospital) just completed a 12-week employee lifestyle challenge. A total of 500 participants exercised over 1 million minutes and lost over 1600 pounds. The challenge will be repeated in the fall. Paul MacLean at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and members of the Center for Human Nutrition are studying why many people are unsuccessful at keeping the weight off after weight loss. They have developed a rodent model of obesity with similarities to human obesity. Some of this work will be published in an upcoming issue of the American Journal of Physiology. Sharon Miller (smiller@beef.org), Director of Research for National Cattleman's Beef Association in Centennial, CO shared with us that the Cattlemen's Beef Board funds nutrition research and has set obesity and associated co-morbidities as a high priority for 2005 funding. The call for proposals for 2005 funding will be posted on their website in early October. Helen Seagle (Kaiser Permanente-Colorado Weight Management Program) was appointed Communications Chair (and newsletter editor) for the recently formed Weight Management Dietetic Practice Group. James Stevens, PhD candidate, Research Assistant, Dept of Health and Exercise Science, Colorado State University received the Shrake Culler and Pashby Scholarship Award. Congratulations James!

    Oregon
    John Purnell reports that The Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) has a new institute, The Center for the Study of Weight Regulation and Associated Disorders (http://www.ohsu.edu/weight/). Its mission is to bring together investigators in obesity and cachexia from the Oregon National Primate Center (Michael Cowley and Richard Simerly), The Vollum Institute (Malcolm Low, Wei Fan, and Roger Cone), the Kaiser Center for Health Research (Njeri Karanja), and OHSU (Jonathan Purnell, Robert Steiner, and Daniel Marks).

    Congratulations to Wei Fan (OHSU's Vollum Institute) who just recently got his first R01. Wei Fan good for you!

    Canada
    Paul Boisvert reports from Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
    CIHR and the Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism and Diabetes (INMD) announced a third round of requests for applications under its strategic initiative "Excellence, Innovation and Advancement in the Study of Obesity and Healthy Body Weight". Details on funding opportunities under this strategic initiative are posted on the CIHR website.

    The CIHR net program in Neurobiology of Obesity regrouping Bill Colmers, Denis Richard, Alastair Ferguson and Keith Sharkey will be organizing a symposium on the Neurobiology of Obesity at the Canadian Physiological Society Annual meeting February 3rd to 6th, 2005 in Quebec City at Le Mont Ste-Anne ski resort . For more information.

    from the Universit=E9 Laval
    Angelo Tremblay and Paul Boisvert from the DB Brown Research Chair on Obesity are organizing a mini- symposium on Obesity and Food Behavior featuring John Blundell, Albert Stunkard, France Bellisle, Simone Lemieux and Vicky Drapeau at Universit=E9 Laval, Quebec City August 23 from 8 to noon. Registrations are open to the scientific community. For more information
    Michel Cabanac recently released the book, La Cinquieme Influence, ou la Dialectique du plaisir 2003, Quebec: Presses de l'Universite Laval. Cabanac's originality brings an intuitive understanding into the field of science. The general conclusion is that pleasure moves the human brain and pleasure is the fifth influence of the universe. Because many examples are drawn from body weight regulation, this book should be of special interest to NAASO members fluent in French.

    From University of Ottawa
    Chris Blancard, =C9ric Doucet and Pascal Imbeault's Canada Foundation for Innovation & Ontarion Innovation Trust funding of 1,5M$ ($1.1M US) has recently favored the establishment of a Research Centre for Obesity Treatment and Prevention at Montfort Hospital, Ontario, Canada. For more information, please contact Pascal Imbeault/ University of Ottawa, School of Human Kinetics, (613) 562-5800 ext 4269.

    Read Regional Notes in their entirety »

    Message from the President


    How Should Obesity be Treated?

    Barbara E. Corkey, PhD

    In previous messages, I urged a more thorough investigation into the causes of obesity as part of a call to action to stop the obesity epidemic. Without knowledge of the cause, it is difficult to find the solution. We do not know how to effectively treat obesity! We need to encourage investigation into the effective treatment of obesity and into the development of new and effective drugs. This is not happening with great speed. In a recent report the top ten drug areas of research were reported to have pipelines that included more than 1700 new drugs under development (King, J., 2003, "Top 10 Areas of Research: Fourth annual report on the most popular fields of drug development," R & D Direction 9:28-54). Over 600 were for the treatment of cancer and over 100 each were for the treatment of infections, arthritis, cardiovascular disorders, respiratory problems and psychological problems. None were for the treatment of obesity. Fortunately, there are expectations that research by pharmaceutical companies will yield new drugs for the treatment of obesity. However, at present few drugs have successfully completed phase II trials.

    In view of the enormity of the problem of obesity, the enormity of the failure to reverse this problem and the billions of dollars spent to treat obesity ineffectively it is critical to find solutions. Current treatments are mainly things that are known to be beneficial in some way and not to cause harm. This is very different from having a real handle on the epidemic. There is no proof that either current or proposed interventions will reverse the obesity epidemic. The Center for Disease Control supports several public health initiatives including 20 State Nutrition and Physical Activity Programs to prevent obesity and related chronic diseases. Valuable data will derive from these and like initiatives.

    Read Dr. Corkey's previous messages, "A Call to Action" and "What are the Causes of Obesity?"

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    This Newsletter is made possible by an unrestricted grant from Aventis
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