It's a gut feeling: how your nerves are linked to obesity

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

A free public lecture at the University of Adelaide next week (Tuesday 23 August) will help to explain the important role of nerve signals in the gut in maintaining health, and how that system is disrupted by obesity.

"When we feel full after a meal it's the result of a variety of different nerve signals from the gut, responding to distension of the stomach and specific nutrients. These nerve signals are vital for maintaining a healthy energy intake," says public lecture presenter Professor Amanda Page.

Professor Page is Head of the Vagal Afferent Research Group in the University of Adelaide's School of Medicine, and Deputy Theme Leader for the Nutrition and Metabolism Theme at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI).

"The nerves in the gut are a highly flexible and adaptable connection between the gut and the central nervous system. The system responds to both the kinds of nutrients people are consuming and the hormones that regulate appetite. When it's working well, this system is essential for ensuring an appropriate control of food intake on a day-to-day basis.

"However, the nerves innervating the gut are susceptible to disruption in certain chronic disease conditions, such as high fat diet-induced obesity. It's for this reason that these nerves are of growing interest as a potential target for drug treatments for conditions such as obesity," Professor Page says.

"With obesity being such a major concern for our society, we hope that a more comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms involved in nerve gut signaling will enable more effective treatments and lifestyle strategies."

This free public lecture is part of the 2016 Executive Dean's Lecture Series in the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Adelaide.

WHAT: The Gut in Health and Obesity by Professor Amanda Page (University of Adelaide and SAHMRI)
WHERE: Napier Lecture Theatre 102, Napier building, North Terrace campus, University of Adelaide
WHEN: 5.30pm Tuesday 23 August 2016
COST: Free — all welcome. Please register.


Contact Details

Professor Amanda Page
Head, Vagal Afferent Research Group, Centre for Nutrition and Gastrointestinal Diseases, School of Medicine, The University of Adelaide;
and Deputy Theme Leader, Nutrition and Metabolism Theme, SAHMRI
Business: +61 8 8128 4840
Mobile: +61 413 984 257

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762