Development of a Sleeve Gastrectomy Weight Loss Model in Obese Zucker Rats

Peter P. Lopez, Susannah E. Nicholson, Gabriel E. Burkhardt, Robert A. Johnson, Fruzsina K. Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Background: Obesity promotes the development of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The most effective weight loss treatment is bariatric surgery, but results greatly vary depending on the procedure. Sleeve gastrectomy (SG) has recently emerged as a reduced risk weight loss procedure for super obese patients. However, the mechanism of weight loss from SG and its effects on obesity-induced complications are yet to be determined. Our goal was to develop an experimental model of SG in genetically obese rats. Materials and Methods: Male obese Zucker rats (400-500 g, leptin-insensitive) were anesthetized with isoflurane. After a midline laparotomy, the stomach was clamped, the greater curvature was excised, and a triple suture line was used to close the gastric remnant. Sham rats underwent laparotomy only. Metabolic parameters were followed for 14 d after surgery. Results: Caloric intake and body weight decreased in SG rats over 14 d by 98 ± 10 kcal/d and 74 ± 14 g, respectively. Blood total cholesterol levels were lower in rats that lost weight. Furthermore, blood glucose levels were lower in rats that lost weight. Active ghrelin levels were unchanged in SG rats 14 d after surgery. Conclusions: These results show that SG promotes weight loss in obese Zucker rats. Furthermore, SG-induced weight loss is accompanied by improved plasma cholesterol and glucose profile. However, SG does not promote a prolonged decrease in ghrelin levels. These results suggest that SG is an effective weight loss procedure in leptin insensitivity to improve the lipid profile and decrease insulin resistance and these effects might be independent of changes in ghrelin levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)243-250
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 2009


  • body weight
  • gastric partitioning
  • ghrelin
  • insulin resistance
  • metabolic indices
  • obesity
  • sleeve gastrectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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