The holiday season may be full of joy, but it is also full of temptation, with abundant food and drink at seemingly every turn, and even full of stress, as family, economic, and other tensions can arise. And at a time when health officials around the world are increasingly concerned about the obesity epidemic and its related conditions, such as diabetes, there is particular reason to be aware of overeating, stress, coping mechanisms, and related issues.

At the Weizmann Institute of Science, researchers are studying the constellation of issues that seems to become prevalent at this time of year, with investigations of obesity and its repercussions; diabetes and other metabolic disorders; stress and how the body reacts to it; and much more. Some examples of this research are presented below.

Heartbeat

Dr. Alon Chen's research could lead to better ways of managing stress.

Unraveling Stress: Understanding the Mechanisms for Coping. Dr. Alon Chen is investigating the body’s stress response. This research may lead to tools for managing stress-related illness such as diabetes, heart disease, depression, and many other conditions.
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The Lab Mice that Didn’t Get Fat. Real solutions to the problem of obesity are surprisingly hard to come by. This is partly because we still don’t understand all of the complexities of the metabolic cycles in which eating, hunger, physical activity, and body weight are regulated. Weizmann scientists have added another piece to the obesity puzzle, showing how and why a certain protein that is active in a small part of the brain contributes to weight gain.
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Weizmann Scientists Discover a Gene that Ties Stress to Obesity and Diabetes. It is known that stress can lead to negative health impacts, but how? Weizmann scientists have now identified a gene that links stress to obesity and diabetes.
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The Diabetes and Obesity Connection. As obesity rates soar worldwide, so do those of diabetes. Prof. Michael Walker is studying why obese people have a greater risk of developing diabetes, and investigating new ways to treat the disease.
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The Fat Factor. Scientists from the Weizmann Institute and Sweden revealed how one protein’s response to fat in the bloodstream contributes to diabetes. This work could lead to new drugs to combat the diabetes epidemic.
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Weizmann Institute Scientists Discover a Protein that Contributes to Obesity. Weizmann Institute scientists have furthered our understanding of obesity by showing how a certain protein contributes to weight gain.
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Weizmann Institute Scientists Show How Adversity Dulls Our Perceptions. Research finds that perceptions learned in an aversive context are not as sharp as those learned in other circumstances. The findings may help explain the development of post-traumatic stress syndrome.
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Israel’s Brainsway Stimulates a Magnetic Remedy for Depression. A Weizmann Institute researcher’s invention has led to an experimental non-invasive treatment that may effectively treat depression.
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