The Canadian Obesity Network, McMaster University

August 10, 2007 08:00 ET

Local Obesity Expert Accepts New Role in Edmonton

HAMILTON, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Aug. 10, 2007) - McMaster University professor and Canada Research Chair in Cardiovascular Obesity, Research and Management Dr. Arya M. Sharma is taking the fight against the obesity epidemic west.

As of September 1, 2007, Dr. Sharma will helm Capital Health's lauded Weight Wise program in Edmonton, AB. He will also assume the role of Chair in Obesity Research and Management at the University of Alberta, along with a clinical practice at the Royal Alexandra Hospital.

Dr. Sharma will remain the Scientific Director of the Canadian Obesity Network, a national not-for-profit organization that links obesity researchers with the private sector, practitioners, and policy-makers to foster innovations and investments toward cost-effective solutions to prevent, control and treat obesity.

"McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences have provided a great environment to grow professionally and foster knowledge and connections among the research and health care communities that are critical in the fight against obesity and its complications," Dr. Sharma says. "The move to the University of Alberta and Capital Health will build on this momentum, both for me and for the Canadian Obesity Network."

Capital Health developed the Weight Wise program in response to the high incidence of obesity and overweight in the region, which serves more than 1 million Albertans in the Edmonton area and has a referral area of 1.6 million people across central and northern Alberta and Canada's North. Fifty per cent of adults in the region and one in four children in Alberta are either overweight or obese. The Weight Wise initiative makes it easier for patients to get the advice, treatment and support they need to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, and also provides a single point of entry for people with weight management issues for improved access to programs and services.

For more information, or to schedule interviews, please contact Brad Hussey, CON's Communications Officer, at or (289) 238-9148 (local to Hamilton, ON).

The Canadian Obesity Network is funded by the federal Networks of Centres of Excellence Program (, a joint initiative of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and Industry Canada.

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