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University of Colorado Denver

University of Colorado Denver

Obesity Research Initiative

Welcome to a new website for obesity researchers!


Recently, we successfully competed for the opportunity to propose a new School of Medicine (SOM) initiative in obesity research at the fall SOM retreat.  The fact that we were chosen to be one of the possible new SOM initiatives reflects the high quality of research in obesity being done at UCD.


Our task is now to develop an organizational structure for our new initiative and to identify resources that would take us to the next level of excellence in our collective research.  To accomplish this, we have identified 6 focus areas and have assigned each member of the research initiative to a primary focus area.  These areas will likely change in the future but this is a way to get started in identifying our organizational structure and our needed resources.


The overall leadership for this initiative is being provided by Drs. Bob Eckel, Jed Friedman, Rick Johnson and me.  Leadership for each of the focus groups is listed on this website along with members of each group.


We have established this website as a tool to help with communication and to serve as a home for our initiative.  The website can be used to foster collaboration and to share information and opportunities.  We will continue to add features to the website over time.  We welcome your suggestions for improving the website.


The UCD Obesity Research Initiative will work to further the field of obesity research, because obesity and its related complications (diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, renal disease, cancer) is currently the most pressing medical issue in the United States and worldwide.  Obesity is one of the major issues driving health care and health care costs, and should be one of the major national priorities.


Our goal is to bring together obesity researchers and help foster a community of research at the University of Colorado Denver and beyond.  We believe the best obesity research will come from researchers working across disciplines.  This research will help understand how genetics, behavior and the environment interact to affect body weight and body composition.  It will lead to interventions that recognize the interaction of diet and physical activity, and will include researchers who have the ability to use the latest technology to help people lose and maintain weight, or avoid weight gain.


We expect to increase the number of researchers studying obesity and also to increase the quality of this research by providing:

·         equipment, expertise and other resources needed for researchers to stay at the leading edge of their research;

·         a mechanism for facilitating collaborative, multidisciplinary research that truly moves the boundaries of obesity forward;

·         a mechanism for linking basic, clinical and community/outcomes researchers to both develop and implement research advances;

·         a means of enhancing careers of individual investigators and developing future program leaders; and

·         assistance in attracting external funding to support a program of excellence.


If you are interested in joining this initiative or would like more information, please visit the Membership Page.


I welcome the opportunity to hear you comments and suggestions.  You can reach me at



James Hill, Ph.D.

Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine

University of Colorado Denver

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