Myriam Diaz

Myriam Diaz

Chemical & Physical Biology

PI: Brian Welch, Ph.D.

Characterization of Adipose Tissue Before and After Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery

Morbid obesity is an increasing epidemic in the US and is the leading factor in the development of cardiovascular diseases such as coronary atherosclerosis, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and Type 2 diabetes (T2DM). Currently, gastrointestinal bypass surgery, specifically Roux-en-Y bypass (RGBP) surgery, is the most established and effective treatment for substantial and sustained weight loss in morbidly obese subjects. However, the mechanism in which the tissue of the adipose organ changes is not well understood.

Our goal is to investigate adipose tissue (AT) using MRI and PET imaging on obese rats before and after RGBP surgery and determine: size, type and localization of the districts adipose tissues (brown and white) using fat-water MRI, and R2* relaxation time within AT to detect inflammation associated adipose tissue.

Many advances have been made in understanding the underlying mechanism of prolonged weight loss after RGBP, but characterization of AT, specifically spatial distribution, triglyceride composition, inflammation status and mitochondrial density before and after surgery, has not been previously measured in a single imaging-based study. Investigating the role played by AT in combination with hormone and cellular signaling will provide a better understanding of weight loss mechanisms after gastrointestinal (GI) bypass intervention.