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Body weight regulation and metabolism focus of workshop

With more than two-thirds of adults considered overweight and more than one-third categorized as obese, understanding the mechanisms behind weight gain, loss and maintenance is a major national goal. Mathematical modeling of the metabolism and body weight regulation is an important and growing subfield of obesity research, which can be used to address this national goal.

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) is now accepting applications for its Investigative Workshop: Mathematical Models of Metabolism and Body Weight Regulation to be held July 12-15, 2011, at NIMBioS on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus. The goal of this workshop is to bring together researchers in the fields of obesity and metabolism with investigators expert in mathematical and computational modeling to facilitate communication and collaboration between these researchers.

Mathematical models aid in understanding changes in body composition during weight loss or gain, the degree of individual adherence to a diet or exercise plan, and long‐term effects of changes in diet and exercise on an individual's weight. Models have been applied to understand how metabolic rate varies among animal species and the contribution of reduced physical activity and increased food consumption to our current obesity epidemic.

The workshop will provide background on the physiology of human body weight regulation, highlight some of the recent progress applying such methods to modeling human metabolism, food intake, and body composition, and pose open mathematical modeling problems originating from metabolism and body weight regulation research.

The workshop, to be held at NIMBioS on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus, is organized by Kevin D. Hall (NIDDK, National Institutes of Health); Steven B. Heymsfield (Global Director, Scientific Affairs, Obesity, Merck & Co., Inc.); and Diana M. Thomas (Assoc. Professor of Mathematical Sciences, Montclair State University).


Contact: Catherine Crawley
National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS)

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