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Obese male mice father offspring with higher levels of body fat
Date:6/16/2013

In addition, the male offspring of obese fathers had different patterns of body fat compositiona marker for health and propensity for diseasethan the control mice.

The researchers were surprised, however, to find that the offspring of the obese paternal mice also were more physically active. At six weeks, the male offspring voluntarily ran more, and their female siblings demonstrated the same behavior at six and 12 months, the scientists report. Nowak's team is studying possible causes for this behavior, which might offset the increased body fat and reduce the offspring's risk of metabolic disease such as diabetes and heart disease.

In the next phase of the research, the team will seek to identify the genes responsible for the physiological and behavioral changes. This, in turn, may inform clinicians about possible epigenetic factors in human obesity.

"Early detection and prediction of risk for obesity, diabetes and related diseases will enable individuals and health care workers to delay or prevent the related disabilities and increase life expectancy," Nowak said. The study was funded by the Ohio University Research Council and the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine.


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Contact: Andrea Gibson
gibsona@ohio.edu
740-597-2166
Ohio University
Source:Eurekalert

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