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Center for Astrophysics Research and Technologies Seminar Series Information


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Obesity, Energetics, and Lifespan: Exploring the Many Curious Connections

Thursday April 18, 2024
5:30 pm

 Presenter:  David Allison Ph.D., is Dean, Distinguished Professor, and Provost Professor at Indiana University–Bloomington School of Public Health. Continuously NIH-funded as a PI for over 25 years, he has authored more than 600 scientific publications. Awards include the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring (2006); the Friends of Albert (Mickey) Stunkard Lifetime Achievement Award (The Obesity Society, 2021); Elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2012, he also serves as co-chair of the National Academy of Sciences’ Strategic Council on Research Excellence, Integrity and Trust. Dr. Allison is a staunch advocate for rigor in research methods and the uncompromisingly truthful communication of research findings.
 Series:  Sigma Xi Public Talk
 Abstract:  The relations between obesity and longevity have been the subject of scientific investigation for centuries. And the relation between lifespan and caloric restriction and energy expenditure through exercise and other means has also been studied for at least a century. Although historical observations, as well as more recent quantitative analyses, demonstrate a relationship of obesity with early death, there remain questions about the degree of the association and how it may vary with age, diet, physical activity, and other life circumstances. The relationship between body mass index (BMI) and mortality is “U-shaped,” with the lowest mortality rate observed at a mildly overweight BMI. Many potential explanations have been postulated for higher mortality at both lower and higher levels of BMI, such as occult disease in those at low BMI; difference across categories in weight variability, smoking, and/or distribution of body fat; and the “fit but fat” phenotype. I will discuss some of the continuing questions and hypotheses surrounding the relationship of fatness, exercise, and energetics with mortality rate and identify new data and additional research needed.
 Host:  David Dunlap
 Location:  PAIS-1100, PAIS

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