David Pittman, Ph.D.


impact                            benefits to society
  OBESITY is an EPIDEMIC in America. 
Currently, 2 of 3 adult Americans are overweight and 1 of 4 Americans are clinically obese.  There are 3 major contributors to obesity:
  • Genetics (5% of clinical obesity = direct cause)
  • Physical Inactivity
  • Over consumption of high-fat, high-caloric foods

The number #1 reason people eat unhealthy high-fat foods is that those foods taste great.  If we can understand this motivation to eat high-fat food, then we can develop fatty taste substitutes that retain the flavor of fat without the calories.  That would help reduce the prevalence of obesity and the serious health consequences that are associated with obesity.

1 the taste of fat ~ Our laboratory is providing evidence that the taste of high-fat foods may motivate us to eat more of these delicious yet unhealthy choices.

2 drugs affect taste ~ Furthermore, we are examining whether drugs that we take to reduce anxiety may contribute to the over-eating of tasty foods.

Training TOMORROW'S SCIENTISTS is another major goal of my laboratory. 
Every year 3-8 undergraduate students gain hands-on experience conducting rigorous world-class research projects in my laboratory.  In addition to technical laboratory skills, students develop logical, critical thinking skills and learn creative problem solving strategies while collecting, analyzing, and report the experimental data.  I am always looking for motivated and enthusiastic students to learn in my laboratory.  Contact Dr. Pittman if you are interested!


Please use the below links to explore our work:
  summary research
current research
  free fatty acid
free fatty acid
  research facilities people  

Return to Dr. Dave Pittman's web site


The laboratory of Dr. Dave Pittman
Associate Professor of Psychology, Wofford College
429 N. Church Street, Spartanburg, SC  29303