Egyptian Journal of Medical Human Genetics

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Genetics of obesity

RM Shawky, DI Sadik


There is now widespread recognition that the continuing increase in the prevalence of obesity seen in many countries is likely to have major adverse effects on public health. The National Center for Health Statistics reports that 61% of adults in the United States are overweight and 26% are obese. Also The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey IV, 1999–2002, documents that 16% of children are overweight and 31% are at risk of becoming overweight or are already overweight, representing nearly a 300% increase since the 1960s. The genetic influences are likely to be particularly powerful in people with severe and early-onset obesity, the group is most likely to suffer adverse clinical consequences. In this review we will discuss the Genetics of body weight regulation including genes encoding factors regulating food/energy intake, genes encoding factors implicated in energy expenditure, and genes encoding factors implicated in adipogenesis as well as syndromic forms of obesity.

Keywords: Obesity; Body weight regulation; Obesity syndromes
AJOL African Journals Online