Course Overview and Target Audience

TOS and ASMBS have worked together to create an hour-long keynote discussion session designed to engage the full spectrum of attendees: basic scientists, neuroscientists, clinicians, surgeons, population researchers and policy makers. The session will include a panel of leading scientists and clinicians from TOS and ASMBS who will discuss a challenging case study with involvement from the audience. The case will touch on complex issues related to surgery, weight loss and weight regain, and insurance coverage of several different treatment modalities.

TOS Panelists

Caroline Apovian, MD
Caroline Apovian is Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, in the Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Nutrition at Boston University School of Medicine, USA. She is also Director of the Center for Nutrition and Weight Management at Boston Medical Center, USA. Dr. Apovian is a nationally and internationally recognized authority on nutrition and has been in the field of obesity and nutrition since 1990. Her current research interests are in: weight loss and its effects on endothelial cell function, adipose cell metabolism and inflammation, research in the bariatric surgery population, and novel pharmacotherapeutic antiobesity agents.

Richard Bergman, PhD
Professor Richard Bergman has been contributing important research in diabetes and obesity for 40 years, and has published over 450 articles. Bergman obtained his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh. From 1980-2011 Bergman was the Keck Foundation Chair at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine in Los Angeles. In 2011 Dr. Bergman moved to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and founded the Cedars-Sinai Diabetes and Obesity Research Institute, which he directs. Bergman holds the Alfred Jay Firestein Chair in Diabetes. He is a pioneer in systems biology of metabolism. He introduced the use of engineering technology to understand the pathogenesis of diabetes. He is internationally known for the invention of the minimal model approach to assessment of metabolic function and risk for disease. He proved that one may obtain a comprehensive portrait of metabolic function from a clinical test, which provides a single parameter, the "disposition index," the most powerful predictor of future development of Type 2 diabetes in at-risk individuals. Bergman’s laboratory has made seminal contributions to understanding insulin resistance and b-cell function. Bergman won honors for his work, including the "Outstanding Diabetes Investigator" from the American Diabetes Association, the "TOPS" award from the Obesity Society, and a MERIT award from the NIH. Dr. Bergman was awarded the Banting Medal from the American Diabetes Association as well as the Albert Renold Award.

Hans-Rudolf Berthoud, PhD
Dr. Hans-Rudolf Berthoud has obtained his PhD at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH-Zurich) in Biology and after stages at the Universities of Rochester NY (Biophysics), Western Ontario (Physiology), Geneva (Diabetology & Biochemistry), and Purdue University (Biopsychology), he joined the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Louisiana State University System, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he is presently the George H. Bray Professor of Neuroscience. His main interest is in the neural control of appetite, metabolism, and energy balance and the neurobiology of nutrition in general. He has significantly contributed to the field of gut-brain communication through his work on vagal innervation, gut hormones, and their effects on the brain, and to an expanded view of neural control of homeostasis, based on complex interactions between metabolic, emotional, and cognitive brain functions.

William Dietz, MD, PhD
Dr. Dietz is the Director of the Sumner M. Redstone Global Center for Prevention and Wellness at Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. From 1997-2012 he was the Director of the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity in the Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the CDC. Prior to his appointment to the CDC, he was a Professor of Pediatrics at the Tuft’s University School of Medicine, and Director of Clinical Nutrition at the Floating Hospital of New England Medical Center Hospitals. After the completion of his residency at Upstate Medical Center, he received a Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has been a councilor and past president of the American Society for Clinical Nutrition, and past president of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity. From 2001-2003 he served as a member of the Advisory Board to the Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism, and Diabetes of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research. In 1995 he received the John Stalker award from the American School Food Service Association for his efforts to improve the school lunch. Dr. Dietz served on the 1995 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee. In 1997, Dr. Dietz received the Brock Medal of Excellence in Pediatrics from the New York Academy of Medicine. In 1998, Dr. Dietz was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. In 2000, he received the William G. Anderson Award from the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, and was recognized for excellence in his work and advocacy by the Association of State and Territorial Public Health Nutrition Directors. In 2002, he was made an honorary member of the American Dietetic Association, and received the Holroyd-Sherry award for his outstanding contributions to the field of children, adolescents and the media. In 2005 he received the George Bray Founders Award from the North American Association for the Study of Obesity. In 2006, he received the Nutrition Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics for outstanding research related to nutrition of infants and children. In 2008 he received the Oded Bar-Or award from The Obesity Society for excellence in pediatric obesity research. In 2012, Dr. Dietz received a Special Recognition Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics Provisional Section on Obesity, and the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. He is the author of over 200 publications in the scientific literature, and the editor of five books, including Clinical Obesity in Adults and Children, and Nutrition: What Every Parent Needs to Know.

Donna Ryan, MD
Donna H. Ryan, MD is Professor Emerita at Pennington Biomedical in Baton Rouge, LA, where until retirement she directed clinical research for 22 years. Her own research includes participation on the teams that developed and executed the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension), POUNDS Lost, DPP (Diabetes Prevention Program) and Look AHEAD Studies. Dr. Ryan’s continuing interests focus on translation of effective weight management into primary care practices.

Dr. Ryan’s scholarly activities include authorship of more than 200 original publications and 45 books, chapters and reviews, primarily in the field of obesity. She is Associate Editor-in-Chief of Obesity. She served as co-Chair of the Expert Panel that produced the AHA/ACC/TOS 2013 Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Obesity and was a panel member of the 2015 Endocrine Society Systematic Evidence Review and Guidelines for Medications that Affect Body Weight. She is President Elect of the World Obesity Federation.

Deborah Tate, PhD
Deborah F. Tate, Ph.D. is a Professor in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She directs the UNC HealtheWeight Research Program, the Center for Health Applications and Interventions and a Gillings Innovation Laboratory on Precision Public Health. Tate has 20 years of clinical and research experience in behavioral weight management through lifestyle intervention, with a special emphasis on incorporating digital health tools and innovative self-regulation techniques into obesity treatment. Tate conducted several of the first randomized trials using the Internet to deliver behavioral treatments for obesity and has continued to conduct a programmatic series of studies to determine which features of digital weight control programs contribute to their efficacy. She serves as principal investigator on several large, multi-site obesity intervention studies and has been continuously funded to study obesity treatment by the National Institutes of Health since 2000. She is currently an Associate Editor of Obesity.

ASMBS Panelists

Robin Blackstone, MD, FASMBS

Leslie Heinberg, MD, DO, PhD
Leslie Heinberg, PhD, is Section Head for Psychology in the Center for Behavioral Health Department of Psychiatry and Psychology and the Director of Behavioral Services for the Bariatric and Metabolic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. She is a Professor of Medicine in the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University and is a staff member of the Digestive Diseases Institute and the Neurological Institute. Dr. Heinberg is Fellow in of The Obesity Society and a Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders. Dr. Heinberg has served as a principal investigator, co-investigator or consultant on 5 NIH-funded projects focusing on reducing or preventing obesity. Further, she has served as a principal investigator or co-investigator on 3 NIH-funded projects addressing body image. Her clinical interests include obesity, bariatric surgery, eating disorders and disorders of body image. She is a nationally recognized expert in bariatric behavioral health, obesity and body image.

John Morton, MD, FASMBS Dr. John Morton is Chief of Bariatric and Minimally Invasive Surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine. He also heads the Bariatric and Minimally Invasive Surgery Fellowship and is Co-Director of the Stanford Digestive Health Center. Dr. Morton received undergraduate, Masters in Public Health, and Medical Doctor Degree from Tulane University and a Masters in Health Administration from University of Washington. He was the first surgical resident to receive a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar Fellowship in the program’s history at University of Washington and also completed an advanced laparoscopic fellowship at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He served on Capitol Hill as Senator Bill Frist’s Health Policy Intern. He is a Diplomate of both the American Board of Surgery and American Board of Obesity Medicine and certified in Medical Quality by the American College of Medical Quality.

Phil Schauer, MD
Dr. Philip Schauer is Professor of Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, and Director of the Cleveland Clinic Bariatric and Metabolic Institute (BMI). He is past president of the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). He is Chair of Obesity Week, the world’s largest annual meeting devoted to the science and treatment of obesity and metabolic diseases. Dr. Schauer’s clinical interests include surgery for severe obesity, minimally invasive surgery (laparoscopic), and gastrointestinal surgery. He has performed more than 7000 operations for severe obesity and diabetes. His research interests include the pathophysiology of obesity and type 2 diabetes, and outcomes of laparoscopic management of obesity and gastrointestinal diseases. He has also participated in the development of new minimally invasive, endoscopic, and laparoscopic operations. New concepts in surgical training and education have been a major focus of his educational interests.

Michel Gagner, MD
Dr. Gagner has a Private Practice, Clinique Michel Gagner, MD, Inc in Montreal Canada. He also serves as Senior Consultant to Hopital du Sacre Coeur. Dr Gagner is known for his contributions in the field of Minimally Invasive Surgery, in particular the first description of laparoscopic adrenalectomy for Cushing syndrome and pheochromocytoma (1992), first description of laparoscopic pancreatectomy (distal and proximal) (1992-93), first description of endoscopic neck surgery with parathyroidectomy in 1995, first transgastric cholecystectomy in 1997 (NOTES), first description of laparoscopic duodenal switch for obesity in 1999 and laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy in 2000. More recently, he was co-surgeon for the first world transatlantic robotic cholecystectomy, between New York City and Strasbourg (France), the only surgical article published in Nature in 2001.


Polling is only available during the session time.

  1. Audience Question Wife – 1
  2. Audience Question Husband – 1
  3. Audience Question Wife – 2
  4. Audience Question Husband – 2