Professor Brian Oldfield 


Since his recruitment to Monash University 2005, Professor Oldfield has formed a team of Metabolic Neuroscientists focused on the way the brain controls both ends of the energy balance spectrum – on the one hand, its role in the control of food intake and on the other, the way it controls energy expended in metabolism. His group has widespread interests between these two poles of the energy balance equation ranging from the way reward pathways in the brain mediate the craving of highly palatable foods, through the brains involvement in the determination of the distribution of fat to the part played by the brain in anorexia nervosa. He has a major interest in understanding the mechanisms underling bariatric surgery and his group has established the first rodent model of the adjustable gastric band. This work is supported by commercial funding derived from the US based Pharmacuetical and Appliance Compnay, Allergan.


Current Projects


  •  Studies of the parts of the brain coding for motivation to eat including analysis of the integration of homeostatic, reward and cognitive components of eating


  • Studies of the mechanisms underlying the effectiveness of bariatric surgery using a rodent model of the adjustable gastric band


  •  Studies of cannabinoid receptor antagonists and their role as anti obesity therapies individually and in combination with other drugs


  •  Studies of antipsychotic drug (olanzapine) induced weight gain and type 2 diabetes


  •  Studies of the involvement of the brain in the differential lipolysis of abdominal and subcutaneous fat


  • Studies of an activity based rat model of anorexia nervosa and the potential to reverse weight loss by pharmacological intervention in the brain


  • Studies of opiates in reward based pathways of the brain involved in hedonistic aspects of eating


Recent Key Publications


Verty A. N. A., Allen A.M., Oldfield B. J. (2010) The endogenous actions of hypothalamic peptides on brown adipose tissue thermogenesis in the rat.  Endocrinology (Accepted 1/06/10)


Chen D., Hazelwood L., Walker L., Oldfield B., McKinley M., Allen A. (2010) Changes in angiotensin type 1 receptor binding and angiotensin-induced pressor responses in the rostral ventrolateral medulla of angiotensinogen knockout mice. Amer J Physiol (Reg Integ Comp Physiol) 298: R411-418


Qi, Y., Namavar, M. R., Iqbal, J., Oldfield, B. J., Clarke, I. J., (2009) Characterization of the projections to the hypothalamic paraventricular and periventricular nuclei in the female sheep brain, using retrograde tracing and immunohistochemistry, Neuroendocrinology, 90: 31-53


Qi Y., Oldfield B.J. and Clarke I.J. (2009) Projections of rfamide-related peptide-3 neurons in the ovine hypothalamus, with special reference to regions regulating energy balance and reproduction. J Neuroendocrinology 21: 690-697


Ootsuka, Y., Menezes, R.C., Abbas, A., Lavetsky, D.V., Hunt, J., Stefanidis, A., Oldfield, B.J., Blessing, W.W. (2009) Brown adipose tissue (BAT) heats brain and body as a part of the ultradian basic rest-activity cycle (BRAC). Neuroscience 164(2): 849-861


Verty, A.N.A., Boon, W.M., Mallet, P.E., McGregor, I.S., Oldfield, B.J. (2009) Involvement of hypothalamic peptides in the anorectic action of the CB1 receptor antagonist rimonabant (SR 141716). European Journal of Neuroscience 29 (11): 2207-2216


Kampe J., Tschop MH., Hollis JH., Oldfield BJ. (2009) An anatomic basis for the communication of hypothalamic, cortical and mesolimbic circuitry in the regulation of energy balance. Eur J Neurosci 30 (3): 415- 430


Stefanidis, A., Verty A.N.A., Allen, A.M., Owens, N.C., Cowley M.A., Oldfield, B.J. (2009) The role of thermogenesis in antipsychotic drug induced weight gain. Obesity 17(1): 16-24


Kampe J, Brown WA, Stefanidis A, Dixon JB, Oldfield BJ. (2009) A rodent model of adjustablegastric band surgery – implications for the understanding of underlying mechanisms. Obes Surg. 19 (5): 625-631


McKinley M.J, Walker, L.L., Alexiou, T., Allen, A.M., Campbell, D.J., Di Nicolantonio, R., Oldfield, B.J., Denton, D.A. (2008) Osmoregulatory fluid intake but not hypovolemic thirst is intact in mice lacking angiotensin. Am J Physiol (Regul Integr Comp Physiol) 294(5): R1533-1543


Hollis, J.H. Mc Kinley, M.J., D’Souza M., Kampe, J, Oldfield, B.J. (2008) The trajectory of sensory pathways from the lamina terminalis to the insular and cingulated cortex: a neuroanatomical framework for the generation of thirst. Am J Physiol. (Reg Int Comp. Physiol) 294:R1390-1401


Qi, Y., Iqbal, J. Oldfield, B.J., Clarke I. J. (2008) Neural connectivity in the mediobasal hypothalamus of the sheep brain. J Neuroendocrinology. 2008; 87(2):91-112  



© 2010 Victorian Obesity Consortium