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Endocrinology. 2012 May;153(5):2234-44. doi: 10.1210/en.2011-2041. Epub 2012 Mar 13.

Resting energy expenditure and energetic cost of feeding are augmented after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass in obese mice.

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  • 1Center for Basic and Translational Obesity Research, Division of Endocrinology, Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


Although the prevalence of obesity has increased dramatically throughout the world during the last 25 yr, its long-term control remains poor. Currently, only gastrointestinal weight loss surgery, especially Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), is associated with substantial and sustained weight loss and resolution or significant improvement of diabetes mellitus and other metabolic obesity-induced complications. Clinical observations and recent studies have suggested that RYGB induces its effects by changing the physiology of weight regulation. Understanding the underlying mechanisms of these profound and sustainable effects could facilitate the development of novel and less invasive treatments against obesity and its complications. To study the physiological mechanisms of RYGB, we have developed a mouse RYGB model that replicates the human operation. The aims of this study were to develop a roadmap for assessing energy expenditure (EE) in animal models of weight loss surgery and to examine the effects of RYGB on EE. We first measured EE by indirect calorimetry in groups of animals that underwent RYGB or a sham operation. Calorimetry data were analyzed using three different methods: normalization by total body mass, allometric scaling, and analysis of covariance modeling. RYGB in mice induced a significant increase in EE that was independent of the method used. An energy balance analysis was then performed, which also confirmed that RYGB-treated animals have higher energy maintenance needs. Finally, we determined the EE components that account for the observed increase in EE, and we found that resting EE and postprandial thermogenesis are the major contributors to this increase.

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