Timothy Bartness

IN MEMORIAM, 1953-2015

Timothy BartnessTimothy Bartness is a world-renowned obesity researcher and Director of The Center for Obesity Reversal at Georgia State University. Also a Regents’ Professor, Bartness has studied obesity for more than 30 years.

Bartness is passionate about tackling and reversing the nation’s obesity epidemic by using a basic science approach. He has directed researchers in the center to study two ways to reduce obesity, decreasing food intake and increasing energy expenditure, with a primary focus on the mechanisms underlying the control of food intake and energy expenditure.

His lab is focused on how the brain communicates with adipose tissue (fat) through the sympathetic nervous system and how fat communicates with the brain through the sensory nervous system, a bidirectional communication that seems to be responsible for controlling the breakdown of fat and functioning as the principal way mammals decrease their body fat. He is also interested in the brain chemicals that control food acquisition and storage, behaviors that can lead to obesity. He has uncovered a number of neurochemical factors that promote food hoarding in non-human animal models.

One of his projects is in its 30th consecutive year of funding. His last renewal was conferred MERIT (Method to Extend Research in Time) status, which is given to less than 5 percent of National Institutes of Health funded investigators and provides long-term support to investigators with impressive records of scientific achievement in research areas of special importance or promise. Bartness is the former President of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior and previously active in several committees of The Obesity Society, as well as an editorial board member for seven current and five previous journals publishing obesity-related research.

Bartness earned his Ph.D. in physiological psychology from the University of Florida.