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Obesity and Metabolic Disorders

One of our Directors, David Heal, was Head of Biology at BASF Pharma, Nottingham, with global responsibility for obesity research (including projects investigating both central and peripheral pharmacological targets) and for preclinical studies to support the development and registration, positioning and marketing of the anti-obesity drug, sibutramine (Meridia/Reductil) in Europe, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and USA.

Over the past 20 years, our consultants have worked with many different companies on the discovery and development of novel drugs to treat obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Edited Books and Special Issues

Heal DJ, Smith SL, Jones RB. Special Issue of Neuropharmacology - “Central Regulation of Food Intake and Energy Expenditure”, 2012.

Antel J, Finer N, Heal D, Krause G. “Obesity and Metabolic Disorders”. Solvay Pharmaceuticals Conference Series, IOS Press, 2005.

Scientific Articles

Heal DJ, Gosden J, Smith SL. A review of late-stage CNS drug candidates for the treatment of obesity. Int J Obes, 2013; 37: 107-117. Read more...

Heal DJ, Gosden J, Jackson HC, Cheetham SC, Smith SL. Metabolic consequences of antipsychotic therapy: preclinical and clinical perspectives on diabetes, diabetic ketoacidosis, and obesity. Handbook Exp Pharmacol, 2012; 212: 135-164. Read more...

Lynch CJ, Zhou Q, Shyng SL, Heal DJ, Cheetham SC, Dickinson K, Gregory P, Firnges M, Nordheim U, Goshorn S, Reiche D, Turski L, Antel J. Some cannabinoid receptor ligands and their distomers are direct-acting openers of SUR1 K(ATP) channels. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab, 2012; 302: E540-E551. Read more...

Heal DJ, Gosden J, Smith SL. What is the prognosis for new centrally-acting anti-obesity drugs? Neuropharmacol, 2012; 63: 132-146. Read more...

Heal DJ, Gosden J, Smith SL. Regulatory challenges for new drugs to treat obesity and comorbid metabolic disorders. Br J Clin Pharmacol, 2009; 68: 861-874. Read more...

Heal DJ, Smith SL, Fisas A, Codony X, Buschmann H. Selective 5-HT6 receptor ligands: progress in the development of a novel pharmacological approach to the treatment of obesity and related metabolic disorders. Pharmacol Ther, 2008; 117: 207-231. Read more...

Heal DJ. Obesity drug development - CBI's 2nd Annual Summit. Drugs, 2006; 9: 682-685.

Woolard J, Bennett T, Dunn WR, Heal DJ, Aspley S, Gardiner SM. Acute cardiovascular effects of sibutramine in conscious rats. J Pharmacol Exp Ther, 2004; 308: 1102-1110. Read more...

Cheetham SC, Jackson HC, Vickers SP, Dickinson K, Jones RB, Heal DJ. Novel targets for the treatment of obesity: a review of progress. Drug Disc Today, 2004; 1: 227-235.

Heal DJ, Rowley HL, Jackson HC. Delivering the next generation of anti-obesity therapies – challenges for pharmacogenomics, patients and the pharmaceutical industry. In: Progress in Obesity Research, Volume 9. Medeiros-Nero G, Halpern A, Bouchard C (Eds). pp 260-264. John Libbey, Paris, 2003.

Heal DJ, Aspley S, Prow MR, Jackson HC, Martin KF, Cheetham SC. Sibutramine: a novel anti-obesity drug. A review of the pharmacological evidence to differentiate it from d-amphetamine and d-fenfluramine. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord, 1998; 22 (Suppl 1): S18-S28; discussion S29. Read more...


Heal DJ, Vickers SP, Hackett D, Hutson PH. Metabolic effects of lisdexamfetamine in a rat model of human obesity with insulin resistance. European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Congress, Barcelona, Spain, 5th-9th October 2013.


  • Drug Abuse Evaluation
  • ADHD
  • Binge-Eating Disorder
  • Psychiatric and Neurological Disorders
  • Psychedelics and Cannabinoids

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