Pharmaceutical interventions for weight-loss maintenance: no effect from cabergoline

Academic Article


  • Background: Weight regain is a major limitation to successful weight maintenance following weight loss. Observational studies suggest that stimulation of dopamine receptors in the central nervous system is associated with weight loss and inhibition of weight gain. Our objective was to test the hypothesis that dopamine agonist treatment would prevent weight regain following acute weight loss in individuals with obesity. Methods: We conducted a 2-year double blind randomised controlled trial comparing the effect of a dopamine agonist, cabergoline, with placebo on weight regain in obese individuals who had lost at least 5% of their body weight using an 800 kcal/day commercial meal replacement programme. The primary outcome measure was the difference in mean weight between the treatment and control groups over the 2-year period following randomisation. Results: At 24 months, there was no difference in body weight between cabergoline and placebo treatment after adjustment for age, gender and baseline values (0.6 kg (95% CI: −1.5, 2.6), p = 0.58). The mean (±SD) baseline body weight of the randomised participants was 101.8 kg, the mean (±SD) weight loss with the 800 kcal/day diet was 7.1 ± 1.8 kg and the mean (±SD) weight regain at 24 months was 5.1 ± 7.5 kg. There were no significant differences in BMI, percent weight loss, waist circumference, resting energy expenditure, blood pressure or metabolic parameters at 24 months between the two groups. Conclusions: Treatment with the dopamine agonist cabergoline does not prevent weight regain in obese individuals following weight loss.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Manning PJ; Grattan D; Merriman T; Manning T; Williams S; Sutherland W
  • Start Page

  • 1871
  • End Page

  • 1879
  • Volume

  • 42
  • Issue

  • 11