Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


OHSU researchers uncover cause, possible treatment for abdominal fat in postmenopausal women


Research helps explain the accumulation of ’central body fat’ in middle-aged women and a method for counteracting the obesity problem

Oregon Health & Science University researchers will unveil research results that help explain why middle-aged women develop central body fat. The announcement will take place during the 2005 Society for Endocrinology annual meeting today in San Diego. The OHSU research team has also conducted initial testing of estrogen replacement therapy as a possible method for counteracting the problem.

"We have all seen visible evidence that the United States is currently facing an obesity crisis," said Bethany Klopfenstein, M.D., a fellow in the division of endocrinology of the OHSU School of Medicine. "The obesity epidemic is not only expanding the waistlines of Americans. It is also being connected to the unhealthy surge in type 2 diabetes cases, cardiovascular disease and other associated disorders. For women, a sudden increase in weight often occurs following menopause. This not only raises obesity-related health concerns. The weight gain also can be an emotionally difficult occurrence for aging women."

To conduct this research project, scientists observed a group of 46 pre- and postmenopausal women. In the postmenopausal group, some of the women involved in the study were receiving hormone replacement therapy, others were not. By analyzing data from study participants, researchers determined that the drop in estrogen levels commonly associated with menopause is linked to an increase in a form of the hormone cortisol.

Another key finding was that postmenopausal women who were not receiving hormone replacement therapy had higher cortisol levels than those who were receiving therapy. On average, these untreated women with higher cortisol levels also witnessed an increase in abdominal fat when compared with women receiving the therapy.

"These findings also suggest that estrogen replacement therapy protects women from developing high cortisol levels and increased abdominal fat," said Jonathan Purnell, M.D., an associate professor of medicine (endocrinology, diabetes and clinical nutrition) in the OHSU School of Medicine and a researcher in OHSU’s Center for the Study of Weight Regulation and Associated Disorders. "We believe that by preventing this rise in cortisol, we can possibly delay or prevent weight issues and the many weight-associated disorders in some of these women."

To further confirm the relationship between estrogen replacement and cortisol levels, researchers treated seven postmenopausal women not already undergoing hormone replacement therapy with a synthetic form of estrogen. After one month of therapy, these women, who all previously had heightened cortisol levels, witnessed decreased cortisol at levels close to that of premenopausal women.

The findings also suggest that over time, this group of women may also witness a decrease in abdominal fat. However, more long-term studies involving delayed estrogen replacement therapy would be required to confirm this theory.

Jim Newman | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Inflammation Triggers Unsustainable Immune Response to Chronic Viral Infection
24.10.2016 | Universität Basel

nachricht Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Enormous dome in central Andes driven by huge magma body beneath it

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Deep down fracking wells, microbial communities thrive

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>