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Role of intestinal inflammation as an early event in obesity and insulin resistance

Ding, Shengli; Lund, Pauline K

Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition & Metabolic Care: July 2011 - Volume 14 - Issue 4 - p 328–333
doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e3283478727
Genes and cell metabolism: Edited by Nada Abumrad

Purpose of review To highlight recent evidence supporting a concept that intestinal inflammation is a mediator or contributor to development of obesity and insulin resistance.

Recent findings Current views suggest that obesity-associated systemic and adipose tissue inflammation promote insulin resistance, which underlies many obesity-linked health risks. Diet-induced changes in gut microbiota also contribute to obesity. Recent findings support a concept that high-fat diet and bacteria interact to promote early inflammatory changes in the small intestine that contribute to development of or susceptibility to obesity and insulin resistance. This review summarizes the evidence supporting a role of intestinal inflammation in diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance and discusses mechanisms.

Summary The role of diet-induced intestinal inflammation as an early biomarker and mediator of obesity, and insulin resistance warrants further study.

Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology, Center for Gastrointestinal Biology and Disease University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA

Correspondence Pauline K. Lund, PhD, Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 111 Mason Farm Road, CB# 7545, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27599-7574, USA Tel: +1 (919) 966 1490; e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.