Obesity exhibition chosen among Best of Scottish Science

An interactive obesity research exhibition designed and led by a team of academics from Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, is currently being showcased as one of Scotland’s most exciting scientific advances.

Best of Scottish Science exhibition 2012‘Fat Body Slim: Shape Matters!' – RGU’s interactive exhibition investigating the science behind obesity, body shape and health – is featuring in the Best of Scottish Science exhibition which runs from Sunday 1 to Wednesday 4 April at Our Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh.

The Best of Scottish Science is part of Edinburgh Science Festival - one of Europe’s largest celebrations of science and technology which this year runs between 30 March and 15 April. 

‘Fat Body Slim’ is one of only seven to be showcased at the annual international exhibition. It has been designed by the University team to showcase its obesity research through a series of interactive displays. Quizzes, videos and hands-on activities help explore the link between obesity and chronic health problems like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

The exhibit initially came into being in 2010 when it was selected to appear in the Royal Society’s Summer Science Exhibition, held at London's South Bank Centre for the Royal Society’s 350th anniversary year. Since then it has been selected to appear in science exhibits and festivals all over the country, and has toured throughout Scottish educational and community establishments - the latter made possible by a £25,000 grant from the Scottish Government Science Engagement Fund.

Visitors at the Best of Scottish Science have had the opportunity to learn how weight distribution impacts on their life, as well as the role individual lifestyles play in maintaining health and fitness. They have also been able to wear a fat suit, see real fat cells under the microscope, and find out whether they can differentiate between the myths and the facts about obesity.

Fat Body SlimThe exhibiting team of academics is led by Dr Giovanna Bermano, leader of the Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disease research theme within the University's Institute for Health and Welfare Research, The team comprises fellow members of the Institute and the School of Pharmacy and Life Sciences.

Dr Bermano said: "It is a tremendous honour to have been invited to be part of the Edinburgh Science Festival, especially as one of the elite in the Best of Scottish Science exhibition. This is a fantastic opportunity to showcase our research, and to inform the public about what science can do for them in their day-to-day lives.

“In addition to learning how body composition and fat distribution can affect the development of obesity-associated diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer, we hope to help individuals see what a few extra pounds can do to their body in a fun and interactive way”.

Further information about the exhibition and team's research, can be found at the microsite:

Information about the 2012 Royal Society’s Summer Science Exhibition can be found at

Photo caption:

  • Top right: Representatives from each exhibit gather at a reception (Image provided by Royal Society of Edinburgh)
  • Bottom left: Dr Marie Goua and Dr Giovanna Bermano 

Andrew Youngson
Communications Officer | Faculty of Health and Social Care
Robert Gordon University
AB10 1FR
Tel: 01224 262389