January 2011

January 2011
The Obesity Society Newsletter

In This Issue
Call for Abstracts-Obesity 2011
Obesity Organizations Encouraged by Positive Outcome for New Treatment
Update on QNEXA'S Progress
NIH RFAs for Lifestyle Interventions in Overweight and Obese Pregnant Women Published
2nd World Congress on Interventional Therapies for Type 2 Diabetes
Michigan Pennsylvania and Kentucky Republicans to Wield Power Over Healthcare Issues in 112th Congress
Panel Discuss on "Weight Loss Through the Ages" January 19th
Bylaws Amendments
Upcoming Webinar for The Weight Management DPG
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Healthy Eating Reserach 2011 Call for Proposals
This Month in Obesity
TOS and Obesity in the News
END NOTE: From the Executive Director

Jennifer Lovejoy-Headshot

Happy New Year!  2010 was an exciting year for obesity research and treatment and it's looking like 2011 holds more of the same.  There was a great deal of focus on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2010, especially with regard to the new drug hearings.  The Obesity Society submitted written and oral comments at FDA hearings for Qnexa, lorcaserin and Contrave.  TOS' position is to support the need for multiple treatment options for obesity, not for specific products. 

Additionally, The Obesity Society has begun to speak to myths that can cloud perceptions about obesity and weight loss and may, at times, adversely impact public policy decisions.  In December, at the Contrave hearing, TOS addressed three common myths: 1) Obesity is just a lifestyle problem; 2) Obese people lack willpower and are over-indulgent; and 3) Obese patients need to lose lots of weight to achieve health benefits.  By dispelling each of these misperceptions about obesity, we hope to make it clear that treatment options are needed and the risk-to-benefit ratio must be taken into consideration when evaluating new drug options.  In the coming months, TOS will be working with several organizations to continue to make these points to the FDA and help clarify the issues as the agency considers new obesity drug applications.  TOS' education activities will not end here, however, working with the FDA will be our first focus for 2011 with continued efforts to reach out to policy legislators and regulators.    

The Obesity Society has an exceptional volunteer network committed to serving the organization and our members.  Nearly 300 volunteers spend countless hours planning and implementing valuable membership programs.  Each year they set goals and then work to fulfill those goals,  and, I will say that the goals for this year are focused, clear and ambitious. 

The Annual Program Committee is already hard at work, focused on planning a meeting filled with high-quality joint symposia, including symposia that cut across all tracks and feature more diversity of speakers and chairs.  At the request of the new Basic Science Section, special attention is being paid to the organization of the basic science tracks in the hope that we can better address the needs of this group of TOS members, and attract more basic scientists to our meeting.  The Development Committee, which works to support fundraising efforts for TOS, is focused on non-traditional sources of revenue as we face the economic realities of the new year.  The committee is also researching the possibility of a new online clinical journal.  Finally, the Early-Career Investigator Committee is looking for new ways to enhance the early-career membership experience, manage the new mentoring program, and identify promising new investigators to serve on TOS committees. 

We look forward to an exciting new year. 

 Jennifer Lovejoy Signature

Jennifer C. Lovejoy, PhD

President, The Obesity Society

Call for Abstracts: Obesity 2011

The Obesity Society will be accepting abstracts for the 2011 Annual Meeting, beginning February 11, 2011. Additional information will follow regarding abstract categories and guidelines for submission. Accepted abstracts will be presented at the Annual Meeting as oral presentations or as posters. The Call for Abstracts website will close on March 23, 2011.

Obesity Organizations Encouraged by Positive Outcome for New Treatment Option

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), The Obesity Society (TOS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) found encouragement in the outcome of the advisory committee hearing held on December 7, 2010, favoring approval for the first new obesity treatment in more than 10 years.


Read Full Press Release

Update on QNEXA'S Progress 


VIVUS, Inc. announced that the company, as part of its continuing effort to secure regulatory approval for QNEXA® in the US, submitted a briefing document to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) designed to address items in the FDA's Complete Response Letter (CRL), issued on October 28, 2010. The company also announced that the Endocrine and Metabolic Division of the FDA has granted VIVUS a meeting in the second half of January 2011 to discuss the content of the proposed resubmission.


Read Full Press Release

NIH RFAs for Lifestyle Interventions in Overweight and Obese Pregnant Women Published

Nearly half of US women of childbearing age are now considered overweight or obese, with prevalence rates being higher among some racial/ethnic minority populations and those of low socioeconomic status. In addition, amounts of gestational weight gain (GWG) and post-partum weight retention have been increasing over time, resulting in higher pre-pregnancy BMIs during subsequent pregnancies. Numerous observational studies have linked overweight/obesity, and/or excessive GWG during pregnancy to adverse health consequences in both mothers and offspring.


NIH RFAs for Lifestyle Interventions in Overweight and Obese Pregnant Women have been published (for Clinical Centers and Research Coordinating Unit). For more information, please visit:


 World Congress on Interventional Therapies for   Type 2 Diabetes


The Obesity Society has endorsed the 2nd World Congress on Interventional Therapies for Type 2 Diabetes, which will be held in New York next March 28-30, 2011.


The Congress also welcomes the submission of abstracts for poster and oral presentations: http://wcidt.org/call-for-abstracts/. The organizers are offering a special registration rate to members of The Obesity Society, who will receive a $100 discount on their registration fees. Registration is open at www.wcidt.org, where you can also find more information and updates. If you register before January 11, 2011, you will receive the double benefit of both the early-bird discount, as well as the endorsing society discount saving up to nearly $200!


For more information on the 2nd World Congress on Interventional Therapies for Diabetes 


Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Kentucky Republicans Wield Power Over Healthcare Issues in
112th Congress

House Republicans from the Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Kentucky Congressional delegations will now have considerable sway over healthcare issues, as a result of the transfer of power from democrats to republicans for the 112th Congress.


Michigan will have considerable influence, given that two of its delegation members will serve at the helm of two powerful House healthcare committees. Representative David Camp (R-MI) will now chair the House Ways and Means Committee, and Representative Fred Upton (R-MI) will wield the gavel for the House Energy and Commerce Committee.  Representative Wally Herger (R-CA) will Chair the Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, while Representative Joe Pitts (R-PA) will run the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee. Finally, Kentucky republican Harold Rogers will chair the full House Appropriations Committee, which has jurisdiction over discretionary federal funding for critical government agencies/programs, such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).


Advocacy Task Force Chair Ted Kyle is looking for TOS members who live in the districts of these key four legislators. If you are a constituent of Representative Camp, Upton, Herger, Pitts or Rogers OR have a personal connection with any of these legislators, please contact TOS Washington Policy Consultant Christopher Gallagher at: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Panel Discussion on "Weight Loss Through the Ages" January 19, 2011


Nutrition, obesity, and weight-loss experts, including Obesity Society President-Elect, Patrick M. O'Neil, will gather at the Library of Congress to present "Weight Loss Through the Ages: Where We've Been, What We've Learned and Where We're Going" at 11:30 am on Wednesday, January 19, in the Mumford Room, on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue SE, Washington, DC.


Read more on the Libary of Congress event on January 19th.

Bylaws Admendments  

The Obesity Society's membership voted to amend the society's bylaws by changing the status of the Editor-in-Chief from a voting member to a non-voting, ex-officio member of the Publications Board.  This decision was made based on best practices for publications and non-profits.  Membership also voted to remove the editor of the newsletter and website from the Publications Board, as that is a staff position.  


The revised bylaws have been approved by vote of the fellows and regular members of the Society.



Please address any questions or concerns regarding these amendments to:

Francesca Dea, Executive Director

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Upcoming Webinar: Weight Management DPG


Presented by: Kathleen B. Hrovat, MS, RD, LD
Date: Wednesday, January 26th, 2011
Time: 1:00 pm EST
CPEU: 1.0


Severe obesity is prevalent among adolescents.  Bariatric surgery is proving to be an effective treatment for adolescent obesity.  As this is a fairly new procedure for adolescents,  practitioners need to be trained in a team-approach to bariatric surgery. This webinar will present an overview of adolescent bariatric surgery and specifically focus on the nutritional aspects of  the preoperative treatment phase, postoperative dietary management and available resources.



About the Presenter:

Kathleen B. Hrovat, MS, RD, LD has over 35 years of experience in the field of clinical nutrition and dietetics. 


To register contact:  http://wmdpg.org/log-in-information/



Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Healthy Eating Research 2011: Call for Proposals Now Open


Application Deadline: Multiple

Healthy Eating Research is a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The program supports research on environmental and policy strategies with strong potential to promote healthy eating among children to prevent childhood obesity, especially among lower-income and racial and ethnic populations at highest risk for obesity. Findings are expected to advance RWJF's efforts to reverse the childhood obesity epidemic by 2015.


This round of funding supports strategic, rigorous, policy-relevant research on a wide range of policy and environmental changes. Target populations include children and adolescents ages 3 to 18 and their families. The Foundation places special emphasis on reaching the children at greatest risk for obesity: Black, Latino, American Indian, Asian/Pacific Islander children, and children who live in lower-income communities.


This call for proposals (CFP) is for three types of awards aimed at providing key decision- and policy-makers with evidence to reverse the childhood obesity epidemic. The three award types are:

  • Round 6 grants;
  • Rapid-response grants; and
  • RWJF New Connections grants awarded through the Healthy Eating Research program.


Approximately $2.35 million will be awarded under this CFP for the three award types.


To learn more about this funding opportunity, to register for a Web conference and to apply for a grant, please visit the Healthy Eating Research program Web site at: www.healthyeatingresearch.org

January 2011


Featured Articles in Obesity This Month Include:Obesity Cover JanuaryIntegrative Physiology

Abdominal fat versus liver in the metabolic syndrome


Behavior and Psychology

Opinion of weight discrimination laws


Integrative Physiology

Brown fat in adult men 

2011 WM Symposium: Weight Management:

A Lifelong Experience


The WM DPG of the American Dietetic Association will hold its 2011 Weight Management Syposium Friday, March 18 to Sunday, March 20, 2011. Location will be the InterContinental (Buckhead) Hotel in Atlanta, GA.



The incidence of overweight and obesity has exploded in every age group from toddlers through the elderly. Identifying specific nutrition needs, as well as targeting obesity prevention programs throughout the lifespan, is an integral component of the national conversation around weight management. Nutrition professionals must be ready to work with people during singular points in their life: the impact of weight on health outcomes for both mothers and their children; the unique environment of school lunch programs; the expanding independence of young adults and university students; connecting with people in social settings such as churches, YMCAs and senior centers; reaching employees at their worksites; and the impact of weight on the ability of elderly to live independently. We will also explore the influence of obesity on chronic disease management.


Visit: http://wmdpg.org/symposium/ for more details.



Here is a round-up of press articles that refer to The Obesity Society and its members or to topics relating to obesity in general. Please note that all external links are provided as a courtesy and do not constitute an endorsement by The Obesity Society.


Obesity in the News

Less education, income linked to obesity in women, not men 


Metabolism & Obesity in Diabetes


Weighing effectiveness versus risk in obesity drugs


Will FDA's tough stance on obesity drive developers away?


Total Calories Cause Weight Gain, Not GI


The Effects of a Healthy Diet on Diabetes

END NOTE: From the Executive Director


francesca_dea_22010 was a very good year for The Obesity Society.  Under the leadership of a strong Council, the organization focused on financial stability, membership value, and programs with strategic vision.  TOS ended FY2010 with positive net revenue without using any reserves.  The organization still has to work toward rebuilding reserves, but this was an excellent step in the right direction. 

Membership value is imperative for the organization and is reflected in the determination to support programs wanted by our scientists and clinicians.  A membership survey was conducted in the Fall to gain a better understanding of member interests.  A new Basic Science Section has been formed to offer networking opportunities, a newsletter, and, soon, a listserv.  TOS held a special National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) session at the Annual Meeting, and a new technical pre-conference session on Doubly Labeled Water was offered.  All Annual Meeting sessions are available online at a discount for members who weren't able to attend the meeting.  A newly rejuvenated effort has increased responsiveness and activity supporting policy and legislative issues.  And, TOS is offering the CORE program for clinicians twice a year, in the Spring and as a pre-conference at the Annual Meeting (also available online for those who were unable to attend). 

Thinking to the future, TOS leadership continues to support the Certified Obesity Medicine Physician (COMP) examination and preparatory education for the program:  An obesity certification supported by 13 organizations will bolster the obesity profession and credibility.  There is also a growing interest in the obesity community working together on advocacy efforts and public education.  To that end, TOS works very closely with the Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) in reaching out to Congress and regulators.  TOS also submitted comments to the FDA for three new obesity drugs being considered.  And, there is one new project being considered, which TOS is spearheading, to bring 16 companies together for an education program that would heighten awareness about the need for research and treatment options.

These programs are just part of the complete portfolio that TOS offers and is developing.  A solid foundation of support for old and consideration of new was set in 2010, creating a springboard into a very productive 2011.  Thank you for your continued support of the organization.

Francesca M. Dea, CAE
Executive Director

About Us

The Obesity Society extends special thanks and appreciation to all our sponsors who continue to support us in our mission.


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If you have questions or information for potential inclusion in the newsletter, please let us know:

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(Please note: External Links are provided as a courtesy. The Obesity Society is not responsible for the content on sites accessed through external links.)

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