About the unit – University of Copenhagen

Obesity Research > About the unit

About the unit

The Section for Obesity Research undertakes basic and clinical research to investigate how appetite and energy metabolism is regulated, with the ultimate goal to improve our ability to prevent and treat obesity and related diseases, such as type-2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

The research group investigates the effects of diets including selected foods and nutrients, physical activity pattern, sleep, stress, gastric bypass, gut microbiota, genetics and medicines on energy balance in individuals who are normal-weight, overweight or obese with/without metabolic complications both in short-term and long-term intervention studies as well as observational studies.


  • What is the role of dietary intake, physical activity, sleep, stress and certain drugs on body weight regulation and overall health?
  • How can body weight loss be maintained in the long term by use of diet, exercise and behaviour change modification strategies?
  • What are the effects of weight loss and the maintenance of a reduced body weight on diseases related to obesity, particularly cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes?
  • Which role does genetic, epigenetic and gut microbial composition as well as certain environmental factors play for the development of overweight and obesity and associated diseases?
  • How can different foods, nutrients or food structures, as well as whole diets affect appetite, energy expenditure and body weight regulation?
  • What are the physiological determinants of appetite and energy metabolism, and what is the importance of various signal molecules, including but not limited to gastrointestinal peptides?
  • How can we develop cost-effective programs for prevention and treatment of overweight and obesity by the use of changes in diet, dietary supplements, functional foods, herbal remedies, pharmaceutical, surgical treatments, physical activity, stress alleviation and sleep extension as well as modern information technologies?

The group also undertakes clinical testing of various weight loss drugs according to Good Clinical Practice quality standards.


The group collaborates with many Danish and international research centres, universities, hospitals, and private companies. See the list.