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Genetic and epigenetic background of adipose tissue development and early-onset obesity in children

​The aim of this project is to identify new functional candidate genes involved human adipogenesis and adipose tissue dysfunction as a cause for early-onset obesity and associated insulin resistance in children.

We want to identify new candidate genes involved in human adipogenesis as well as in ensuing early-onset obesity and associated insulin resistance in children. For this we employ existing genetic and epigenetic profiles (GWAS, MetaboChip, ExomeChip, Illumina Infinium 850K methylation array) of clinical childhood obesity cohorts, mRNA expression profiles during in vitro adipocyte differentiation and from adipose tissue of lean and obese children, and microRNA profiles for systemic biostatistic and bioinformatic analyses. Candidate genes and gene variants will subsequently be analyzed for their functional relevance. The project is settled at the interface of clinical, bioinformatic, and experimental research. Besides our own initiated studies, we are collaborating with big international consortia (eg. Early Growth Genetics Consortium).


Dalgaard K, Landgraf K, Heyne S, Lempradl A, Longinotto J, Gossens K, Ruf M, Orthofer M, Strogantsev R, Selvaraj M, Lu TT, Casas E, Teperino R, Surani MA, Zvetkova I, Rimmington D, Tung YC, Lam B, Larder R, Yeo GS, O'Rahilly S, Vavouri T, Whitelaw E, Penninger JM, Jenuwein T, Cheung CL, Ferguson-Smith AC, Coll AP, Körner A, Pospisilik JA: Trim28 Haploinsufficiency Triggers Bi-stable Epigenetic Obesity. Cell 164:353-364 (2016)

Involved scientists

  • Antje Körner
  • Kathrin Landgraf
  • Antje Berthold
  • Roy Tauscher
  • Elena Kempf
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