PREDICT 1: Association between gut microbes and Type 2 diabetes

A diet rich in healthy and plant-based foods is linked with the presence and abundance of certain gut microbes that are also associated with a lower risk of developing conditions such as obesity, Type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, according to recent results from a large-scale international study that was co–authored by Dr Andrew T Chan, from Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

Prior bariatric surgery lowers mortality and hospital admission rates for COVID patients

The outcomes from the first meta-analysis reporting the possible protective effects of bariatric surgery in patients with COVID-19 infection indicates that prior bariatric surgery is associated with a lower rate of mortality and hospital admission in patients with obesity who become infected with SARS-CoV-2, according to researchers from the Cleveland Clinic, OH.

Device provides the feeling of fullness by stimulating the endings of the vagus nerve with light

Researchers at Texas A&M have designed a device that stimulates the endings of the vagus nerve, which is responsible for the regulation of food intake and might help with weight loss via a simple operative procedure for implantation. Researchers said their centimeter-sized device provides the feeling of fullness by stimulating the endings of the vagus nerve with light. Unlike other devices that require a power cord, their device is wireless and can be controlled externally from a remote radio frequency source.

Women with obesity have increased risks for postpartum haemorrhage complications

Researchers at the University of South Florida Health (USF Health) and Tampa General Hospital (TGH), examining how obesity affected the management and outcomes of postpartum haemorrhage have reported that high-risk obstetric patients, such as women with obesity, may need some additional support or a different treatment protocol for postpartum haemorrhage. The findings, ‘The Impact of Obesity on the Management and Outcomes of Postpartum Hemorrhage’, were published in the American Journal of Perinatology.

Brown fat may protect against numerous chronic diseases

A new study including over 52,000 participants has reported that those who had detectable brown fat were less likely than their peers to suffer cardiac and metabolic conditions ranging from type 2 diabetes to coronary artery disease.

The study, ‘Brown adipose tissue is associated with cardiometabolic health', published in Nature Medicine, by far the largest of its kind in humans, confirms and expands the health benefits of brown fat suggested by previous studies.

Drug combination could improve glucose and weight control in diabetics

Scientists from Hyderabad, India, have shown that adding an experimental cancer drug to a widely used diabetes treatment improves blood glucose control and weight loss in mice, according to a study published in eLife. The results pave the way for clinical studies of the new drug combination as a more effective long-term treatment for millions of people with diabetes and obesity.

Unhealthy alcohol use increases after bariatric surgery

Researchers looking at the changes over time in alcohol use and unhealthy alcohol use two years after bariatric surgery have reported that for every 21 patients who undergo Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and every 29 patients who undergo laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG), on average, one from each group will develop unhealthy alcohol use.

Gut microbiome organisms could play key role in treating T2DM

Researchers at Oregon State University have found organisms in the gut microbiome could play a key role in type 2 diabetes, opening the door to possible probiotic treatments for a serious metabolic disease. A key risk factor for type 2 diabetes is being overweight, often a result of a western diet in combination with low physical activity. The paper, ‘Transkingdom interactions between Lactobacilli and hepatic mitochondria attenuate western diet-induced diabetes’, was published in Nature Communications.

Scientists identify cell responsible for triggering inflammation in fat tissue

UT Southwestern scientists have discovered a type of cell responsible, at least in mice, for triggering inflammation in fat tissue. When fat cells in the body are stuffed with excess fat, the surrounding tissue becomes inflamed. That chronic, low-level inflammation is one of the driving factors behind many of the diseases associated with obesity. The findings, ‘Perivascular mesenchymal cells control adipose-tissue macrophage accrual in obesity’, published in Nature Metabolism, could eventually lead to new ways to treat obesity.

Disadvantaged teens at substantially greater risk of obesity

More than one-third of UK teenagers are starting adult life with excess weight (either overweight or with obesity) and rates are even higher among the poorest, a study led by UCL researchers has reported. The research, published in a briefing paper by the Centre for Longitudinal Studies (CLS) at the UCL Social Research Institute, shows that one in five (21%) young people had obesity at age 17, and a further one in seven (14%) were overweight, based on data collected in 2018-19.