, Volume 56, Issue 3, pp 629-630
Date: 25 Jan 2011

Inflammation: An Equal-Opportunity Process

This is an excerpt from the content

Today’s media are saturated with alarms about the dangers of obesity. We are warned about the impending epidemic of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke, and a litany of other ailments. But who would have ever imagined that Crohn’s disease would land on this list of horrors?

In this issue of Digestive Diseases and Sciences, investigators from St. George’s Medical School in London suggest that obesity may play a role in the pathogenesis of Crohn’s disease (CD) [1]. They arrived at this conclusion via observations on a series of 524 patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and 480 community controls. The crux of their findings was that obesity at time of diagnosis was approximately twice as common among Crohn’s disease patients as among ulcerative colitis (UC) patients, and about three times as common among CD patients diagnosed in later life (ages 50 to 70 years) as among age-matched community controls.

One’s first reaction upon reading these conclusions might be that they are c