Endocrine disrupting chemicals and obesity: the evolving story of obesogens


Increase in obesity pandemic all over the world consequently leads to the investigation of possible causes. In addition to the traditional explanation using the so-called caloric model, the field of endocrine disruptors (EDs), especially subgroup called obesogens, offered more light on the pathogenetic mechanisms involved. After the Second World War a correlation between an increased production of exogenous pollutants and actual obesity epidemic was suggested. “Obesogen hypothesis” implies that molecules called obesogens inadequately stimulate the development of adipose cells and lipid accumulation in existing adipose cells, as well as change metabolic balance or hormonal control of appetite and satiety, leading to an increase in body fat mass. The list of obesogens includes some industrial chemicals, biocides, pharmaceuticals, pollutants, and smoke. EDs from the group of obesogens may exert their effects by the impairment in the programming development of adipocytes, by an increase in energetic depot in the adipose tissue, and by influencing neuroendocrine control of appetite and satiety. Increased scientific evidence on obesogens and their mechanisms of action may help to prevent obesity and mitigate deleterious effects of the environment on human life and development. New translational studies are needed to explain the possible mechanism proposed.

Authors: D Micić, S Polovina, D Micić, D Macut
; Full Source: Acta endocrinologica (Bucharest, Romania : 2005) Oct-Dec 2021;17(4):503-508. doi: 10.4183/aeb.2021.503.