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ABLATE WEIGHT study to assess gastric fundus ablation combined with endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

US researchers have enrolled the first patient in the ABLATE WEIGHT study that is investigating the effects of gastric fundus ablation combined with Endoscopic Sleeve Gastroplasty (ESG) for the management of obesity. This novel study will evaluate the impact of endoscopically ablating the mucosal lining of the gastric fundus – the primary region where the hunger-promoting hormone ghrelin is produced – to assess whether appetite, satiety, and weight loss can be augmented beyond that already seen with the proven ESG procedure.


ESG is a non-surgical, incisionless procedure that allows a gastroenterologist to use endoscopic suturing to reduce the overall size of the stomach to promote long-term weight loss, with patients losing between 17 to 20 percent of their total body weight. According to the researchers, ESG offers less risk of complications and a shorter recovery period, the procedure produces lower overall weight loss results when compared to traditional bariatric surgery. One of the primary reasons bariatric surgery offers greater total body weight loss is that surgery typically involves removing a large portion of the stomach. The portion of the stomach that is removed includes the fundus, which is where the primary hunger hormone, ghrelin, is produced.

Christopher McGowan

“Our goal with fundic ablation is to pair it with ESG to decrease ghrelin levels, improve satiation, and help our patients achieve even greater total body weight loss than they’d get with traditional ESG,” explained the study’s Principal Investigator and Founder/Medical Director of True You Weight Loss, Dr Christopher McGowan. “It’s a truly revolutionary study that we hope will further demonstrate the effectiveness of non-surgical alternatives for long-term weight loss for the millions of Americans who want to lose weight, but don’t want surgery.”


The purpose of this research is to investigate the effects of fundic ablation on circulating plasma ghrelin, satiation, and total body weight loss, as well as the incidence of adverse events. This procedure will be carried out with the HybridAPC (ERBE Elektromedizin GmbH, Tübingen, Germany). The HybridAPC instrument creates an electric current to deliver a safe amount of thermal injury to a portion of the stomach known as the gastric fundus. This thermal injury will target a hormone called ghrelin which is the only known hormone linked to increasing appetite, calorie intake, and weight gain. This procedure is designed to target the bodily effects of appetite control and gastric sensory and motor functions which cause the feeling of fullness and satiation.

The fundic mucosal ablation is not typically done prior to the endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty procedure. When fundic mucosal ablation is sequentially paired with endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty, this combined investigational approach may lead to decreased fasting ghrelin levels, improved satiation, and greater total body weight loss than traditional ESG. This study will help determine if the combined impact of fundic ablation with ESG should be made available to patients as part of a comprehensive weight loss strategy.


The fundic ablation procedure lasts approximately 30 to 60 minutes and is performed under anaesthesia, on an outpatient basis. True You Weight Loss is still enrolling patients who live in the Triangle, NC, region, and patients will be compensated for their time.


For more information about this and other active research studies at True You Weight Loss, please click here

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