What is obesity?  
The Adipocyte  
The Hypothalamus and the Adiposity Signal  
The Arcuate Nucleus  
Acomplia and the Endocannabinoid System  
The Peptide YY Debate  



The purpose of this website was to show how our understanding of appetite control and obesity has developed over the last 50 years. From the 1950's where control of appetite was thought to be controlled peripherally and obesity was due to a lack of self control, to today, where there is now understanding about the complex neural mechanisms in the brain that are responsible for appetite. It is evident that many signals are involved in this mechanism, originating peripherally and in the brain, and that there is complex interplay between the various signalling molecules and the neural pathways in the brain.

A lot of stigma has always surrounded obesity with most people believing that it is down to greed and lack of exercise. Whilst in some cases this may well be true, what I hope has been made clear in this website is that there are many other factors that need to be taken into consideration before labelling someone greedy and lazy! For example, any mutation affecting the various factors that are known to be involved in appetite regulation such as leptin, or the signalling pathways involved in sending those messages, may cause someone to gain weight, regardless of what they eat or how much they exercise.

There is much more research to be done before we can truly understand the exact pathways that control our appetite and body fat and this will take many years to come so patience is required. This knowledge will come though and this will hopefully bring with it effective anti obesity therapies that will help end the increasing incidences of obesity and its related disorders such as diabetes mellitus and heart disease.



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