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The latest news from the Fraternal Order of Eagles

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DRC Investigators Continue To Excel In Research

DRC Director's Report - May 2018

This month I feature two additional grant awards that have been received by faculty members in the FOEDRC.

Dr. Lira Vitor, Assistant Professor in Health and Human Physiology and member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Center and the Obesity Research and Education Initiative at the University of Iowa, received an American Heart Association (AHA) Scientist Development Grant.  This 3-year $308,000 award is for a project entitled, Molecular insights into the exercise-mediated protection against diabetic cardiomyopathy

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FOE DRC Investigators Continue To Excel In Research

Faculty members in the FOEDRC continue to excel in their ability to obtain competitive extramural funding for their research projects. In this month’s newsletter I will highlight new grant awards obtained by two of our members and next month I will feature another two.

Dr. Julien Sebag, Assistant Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics and member of the FOEDRC was recently awarded a 5-year $1.9M grant from the NIDDK for a project entitled: Investigating the requirement of MRAP2 for ghrelin function.

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DRC Researcher Sah Awarded Grant From ADA

Rajan Sah, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine Cardiology Division and member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center was recently awarded a Research Grant from the American Diabetes Association (ADA). The project entitled: SWELL1 regulation of ß-cell excitability and insulin secretion will be supported by the $345,000 award over the next three years. Also, this leading edge experimentation was published in the January issue of Nature Communication.

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Technology Developed By DRC Enhances Detection of Eye Disease in Diabetics

DRC Director's Report, February 2018

Diabetic retinopathy (DR), a complication of diabetes, is the leading cause of preventable blindness in the developed world, and it is one of the most feared complications for people with diabetes. In the US, at least 25,000 people with diabetes go blind every year from this almost entirely preventable disease, and there are 25 million Americans with diabetes at risk for the disease, projected to increase to 50 million over the next 10 years. There is extensive proof that an annual eye exam to detect the retinopathy early and treat it before the onset of symptoms can prevent almost all permanent visual loss, unfortunately the annual eye exam is expensive and access may be difficult.

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American Diabetes Association Supports FOEDRC Researchers

DRC Director's Report - January 2018

Three researchers from the FOEDRC received new grants from the American Diabetes Association for groundbreaking research. The ability of our members to receive these competitive awards is truly remarkable and underscores the quality and rigor of the research that is being conducted in the FOEDRC. There are few institutions that received multiple awards in this current round of ADA funding.  The awards to Drs. Ling Yang, Rajan Sah and Adam Rauckhorst are summarized below.

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Dr. Abel Named President-Elect Of The Endocrine Society

DRC Director's Report - December 2017

It is with great pleasure that we share with you that E. Dale Abel, MD, PhD, was recently elected as the president-elect of the Endocrine Society. His term as president-elect will commence March 20, 2018, and his presidential term will begin on March 20, 2019, for one year.  Dr. Abel credits this high accomplishment in part to the contributions of the FOE whose extraordinary commitment to diabetes research has strengthened his work.

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New Ways To Predict The Risk Of Gestational Diabetes

DRC Director's Report - November 2017

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Wei Bao, Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, University of Iowa, and a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center (FOEDRC) was recently awarded a $419,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to fund a project entitled: Pregnancy-associated microRNAs in plasma as predictors of gestational diabetes.  Some of the preliminary work that contributed to this award were provided by pilot funding from the FOEDRC.

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New Muscle Wasting Research Holds Promise at UI

DRC Director's Report, October 2017

A hearty “Congratulations!” is in order for Dr. Christopher Adams, Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism, and member of the FOE DRC who is the recipient of a five-year, $2.4M grant from the National Institutes of Health to study skeletal muscle atrophy. Dr. Adams holds an FOEDRC endowed chair, and this recent success underscores the important impact of the investment of the FOEDRC towards the ongoing success of his research program.  In preliminary studies, performed in mouse models, Dr. Adams and members of his lab identified the first example of a protein that is required for the loss of skeletal muscle mass, quality, strength, and endurance exercise capacity during aging: the transcription factor ATF4.


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Stressing Muscle Metabolism Prevents Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes

Exciting new research was recently published in the EMBO Journal by the laboratory of FOEDRC Director, Dale Abel.   The study suggests that gently stressing muscle metabolism could help prevent obesity and type 2 diabetes.  The study was carried out on mice where the team found triggering a type of metabolic stress increased levels of a hormone called fibroblast growth factor-21 (FGF21).  The findings showed the animals were completely protected from obesity and diabetes. Interestingly, in the mice which had already started to develop the condition, the hormone reversed the diabetes and helped them return to a normal weight with normal blood sugar levels.

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Chemicals in Plastic Bottles and the Risk of Obesity and Diabetes

DRC Director's Report, August 2017

As you all know, there are many factors that may contribute to the growing risk of obesity and diabetes worldwide. Many understand that an unhealthy diet, gaining too much weight or not exercising enough will certainly contribute to increasing your risk of diabetes.  However, there is also a growing realization that certain environmental exposures and chemicals to which we might be exposed could also increase this risk.