Abstract # 113:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 14, 2014 01:30 PM-01:45 PM: Session 18 (Henry Oliver) Oral Presentation


HIGH GENETIC HERITABILITY OF OBESOGENIC GROWTH IN CAPTIVE VERVET MONKEYS (CHLOROCEBUS SPP.)

C. A. Schmitt1,2, S. Service1, R. M. Cantor1, A. J. Jasinska1, M. J. Jorgensen3, J. R. Kaplan3 and N. B. Freimer1
1University of California - Los Angeles, Center for Neurobehavioral Genetics, Gonda Building, Room 3554, 695 Charles E Young Dr S, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA, 2University of Southern California, 3Wake Forest University School of Medicine
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     Increasing evidence highlights the importance of early development to adult obesity, yet few studies have been undertaken of developmental aspects of adult obesity risk. This research investigates the genetics of obesogenic growth in a genetically well-characterized model under controlled diet and environment: the vervet monkey (Chlorocebus spp.) in the Vervet Research Colony. Measures of body composition – body weight (BW), crown-to-rump length, waist circumference (WC) – were collected thrice yearly in a population of 560 vervets from 2000 through 2013. In all, 59 adults (8 M and 51 F), showed chronic abdominal obesity – an adult WC above 40.5 cm for > 3 successive measurements. Growth was modeled with three-parameter logistic growth curves using nonlinear mixed effects, with parameters modeled as fixed effects and subject and sex/obesity modeled as random effects. We assessed heritability of growth parameters using maximum likelihood variance components analysis in SOLAR. We found marked effects of both sex and obesity status on all parameters of growth in BW. For both traits, growth parameters were highly and significantly heritable, with sex as a significant covariate (e.g., BW: theta1, h2 = 0.71, p < 0.0001; theta2, h2 = 0.69, p < 0.0001; theta3, h2 = 0.26, p < 0.0001). These results suggest that adult obesity is, in part, the outcome of developmental processes driven by heritable bimaturism in BW growth within sex.