Use of high-fat diets to study rodent obesity as a model of human obesity

John R Speakman* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

125 Citations (Scopus)


The main focus of the International Journal of Obesity (IJO) is to better understand human obesity. Many scientists use rodents as convenient models to dissect aspects of physiology and body-weight control that would not be feasible in humans, such as invasive and terminal investigations. At present there is a range of commercial high-fat diets available that have been demonstrated to make small rodents obese. However, some of these diets contain levels of dietary fat that are much higher than the levels that humans routinely consume. The question has been raised as to whether experimental use of these diets with very high levels of fat adequately models the situation of human obesity. If not, the question arises whether the IJO should continue to accept such papers for publication. The Editorial Board of IJO was asked its views on this issue: 14 Board members replied (listed at the end). This short editorial summarises those responses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1491-1492
Number of pages2
JournalInternational Journal of Obesity
Early online date9 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019

Bibliographical note

The board members who responded to the call for information that informed the above editorial were Hans-Rudi Berthoud, Weiqin Chen, Osamu Ezaki, Nick Finer, Frank Greenaway, Joan Han, David Heal, Andrew Hill, John Kirwan, Mike Lean, David Stensel, John Speakman, Angelo Tremblay and Licio Velluso.


  • obesity
  • High-fat diet
  • rodents


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