Disclosure: The authors declared no conflict of interest.
An Integrated Approach to Assess the Role of Chemical Exposure in Obesity
Article first published online: 26 JUL 2013
Copyright © 2013 The Obesity Society
Volume 21, Issue 6, pages 1084–1085, June 2013
How to Cite
Legler, J. (2013), An Integrated Approach to Assess the Role of Chemical Exposure in Obesity. Obesity, 21: 1084–1085. doi: 10.1002/oby.20478
Funding agencies: We acknowledge the contribution of the entire OBELIX team and funding from the European Community's Seventh Framework Programme [FP7/2007-2013] under grant agreement no. 227391.
- Issue published online: 26 JUL 2013
- Article first published online: 26 JUL 2013
- Accepted manuscript online: 17 APR 2013 01:05PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 1 APR 2013
- Manuscript Received: 16 JAN 2013
The evidence that developmental exposure of humans to chemicals plays a role in onset of obesity is convincing, yet controversial as it challenges traditional views on the etiology of obesity. OBELIX, one of the largest pan-European studies researching the obesogen hypothesis, is accruing experimental and epidemiologic data on major classes of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in both laboratory animal and prospective human cohort studies. Though still underway, this integrated and multidisciplinary project is adding new insights to the weight of evidence for effects of EDCs on obesity. Animal studies indicate divergent sex-specific effects of perinatal exposure on the development of overweight. In vitro mechanistic studies have shown that EDCs enhance murine adipocyte differentiation, an effect that is accompanied by global DNA demethylation. Epidemiological studies have revealed an inverse relationship between prenatal polychlorinated biphenyl exposure and birth weight, and suggest differences in pre- and postnatal exposure on growth trajectories in children.