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The O'Brien Foundation, supporting ground-breaking research

Researchers at the O’Brien Institute have taken one step closer to discovering a gene that could switch fat on and off, paving the way for new treatments to combat the global obesity epidemic.

It is crucial work given an estimated 2 in 3 (67%) adult Australians – or 12.5 million people – were overweight or obese in 2017-18, according to government data.

The O’Brien Institute researchers are testing a new therapeutic platform for obesity control which could regulate the metabolic processes tied to obesity. They are testing a newly discovered gene, “Gene X”, which could regulate fat development.

The research is being conducted by Dr Nadeeka Bandara, Dr Tara Karnezis and A/Prof Ramin Shayan, supported by the O’Brien Foundation and The J.O. & J.R. Wicking Trust (managed by Equity Trustees).

Their work could help develop preventive and therapeutic approaches to obesity. This would, in turn, help treat a range of other diseases given obesity can lead to heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and diabetes.

The O'Brien Foundation supports the ground-breaking research of the O’Brien Institute, a Department of St Vincent’s Institute of Medical Research. From its beginning pioneering the application of microsurgery in reconstructive plastic surgery, the Institute now focuses on regenerative medicine and tissue engineering.

With the vision to restore form and function, hope and human dignity, its ambition is to drastically improve clinical outcomes for patients affected by chronic disease, trauma, and congenital conditions.

To learn more about the O’Brien Institute, visit here

Obrien Foundation