9 August DRC Director's Report - August 2023 August 9, 2023 By The Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center Diabetes, Iowa, DRC 0 The FOEDRC maintains two Core Research Facilities. FOEDRC scientists rely heavily on these two Core Research Facilities. These Cores are centralized laboratories that allow researchers to perform experiments needing specialized technologies in a time- and cost-efficient way. This month we focus our report on the world-class FOEDRC Metabolomics Core Facility. Type 2 diabetes is a disease of metabolism. The body’s metabolism produces hundreds to thousands of small molecules by controlling chemical reactions throughout the body. These processes go awry in type 2 diabetes in a manner that results in elevated blood sugar levels. The FOEDRC Metabolomics Core aids researchers to better understand how changes in the body’s metabolism contribute to type 2 diabetes. Because the body’s metabolism includes thousands of chemical reactions that can differ across cells and tissue types, it can be extraordinarily complex and challenging to investigate. The FOEDRC Metabolomics Core Facility helps solve that problem. Studying diabetes metabolism is very complex and requires great expertise. We are fortunate that the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core is directed by a leading expert in diabetes metabolism, Dr. Eric Taylor, who has published his work on diabetes metabolism in leading journals and his research program is funded by grants from the NIH. Using state-of-the-art mass spectrometry, the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core measures the levels of over 300 metabolites from the metabolome in very small amounts of biological samples. An especially unique capability of the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core relate to a technique called isotope tracing. This technique allows scientists to follow a metabolic compound as it undergoes biochemical reactions in the body, thereby providing unparalleled insights into the metabolic pathways. This tracing technique reveals properties of metabolism that cannot be clearly observed by simply measuring metabolite levels and is especially important for understanding mechanisms of disease. The high-resolution mass spectrometers in the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core make isotope tracing and therefore a deeper investigation of diabetes metabolism possible. Currently, the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core analyzes about 500 samples per month, with the majority coming from the FOEDRC and other University of Iowa researchers. Nonetheless, as the capabilities of the FOEDRC Metabolomics Core have become more broadly recognized, we have begun to receive samples from external research scientists, including Iowa State University and 9 other Universities outside of Iowa. A major goal of the Core for the coming year is to develop cutting-edge assays with their new isotope ratio mass spectrometer. This instrument enables measurement of the total amount of different tracers in extremely small amount of sample. This is especially useful for measuring properties of metabolism like metabolic rate or how fast glucose is being used by the body. This could lead to the identification of novel targets to improve or develop new treatments for diabetes. Related Articles DRC Director's Report - August 2021 Postdoctoral research scholar, Calvin Carter, PhD, member of the FOEDRC and recipient of the prestigious FOE Bridge to the Cure award, in collaboration with other FOEDRC researchers, has discovered a safe new way to manage blood sugar non-invasively. Exposing diabetic mice to a combination of static electric and magnetic fields for a few hours per day normalized blood glucose levels and reversed insulin resistance. “The more we look, the more the transfer of electrons seems to underlie diabetes,” Carter said in a Q&A with the American Diabetes Association (ADA). That search was borne out last fall, when Carter and MD/PhD student Sunny Huang, PhD, published ground-breaking findings in Cell Metabolism, showing that static electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) can be used to normalize blood glucose in diabetic mice. Reactions in the press were excited and swift to the researchers’ evidence that blood sugar and insulin sensitivity could be controlled non-invasively. DRC Director's Report - May 2023 The Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center held its Annual Diabetes Research Day on Monday, April 17th. With a strong emphasis on collaboration and sharing of knowledge, this event brought together about 65 researchers, clinicians, and students to advance the understanding of diabetes and improve patient outcomes. Diabetes Research Day featured a lineup of activities including short talks, a keynote address, T32 presentations and a poster session DRC Director's Report - July 2023 Dr. Julien Sebag is leading one of the research projects funded through the Bridge to Cure program. This month, his project has reached a major milestone, having been published in a prestigious journal. In this publication Dr. Sebag recognized the support provided by the FOE through the Bridge to the Cure program. DRC Director's Report - August 2020 The prevalence of obesity continues to increase worldwide due to changes in dietary composition including the addition of sweetners to many food products and evolving patterns of eating behaviors. In particular, excessive consumption of sugars has been linked to metabolic diseases such as diabetes, insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. Fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) is a liver-derived hormone that signals to the brain to reduce sugar intake, but the mechanism for this effect was unknown. This new study by Ph.D. student Sharon Jensen-Cody and other colleagues in the laboratory of Matt Potthoff, Associate Professor in the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Center and Department of Pharmacology and Neuroscience discovered that FGF21 signals to specific nerve cells called glutamatergic neurons in the brain to lower sugar intake and sweet-taste preference. DRC Director's Report - August 2022 This June, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) hosted its 82nd Scientific Sessions in New Orleans, LA. Each year, thousands of attendees join together from across the world to hear the latest cutting-edge research. Sharing the latest scientific findings, the annual meeting is the largest and most important gathering focused on diabetes research. The ADA is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization fighting to bend the curve on the diabetes epidemic and help people living with diabetes thrive. For 82 years, the ADA has driven research to treat, manage and prevent diabetes while also working relentlessly for a cure. Diabetes is the most common underlying chronic condition in the United States. 133 million Americans currently live with diabetes or prediabetes and, in the last 20 years, the number of Americans with diagnosed diabetes has more than doubled. The ADA is focused on timely, critical advancements in diabetes research and care. DRC Director's Report - September 2023 Health and Human Physiology assistant professor Anna Stanhewicz has just been awarded a five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health totaling $3.035 million to put towards her research. Her focus lies in gestational diabetes and the long-term impact it has on those who have had it. Women who develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy are two times more likely to develop cardiovascular disease and 7 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes in the decade after pregnancy, but the reason why this occurs is unclear and there are currently no specific treatment strategies to prevent this disease progression. Showing 0 Comment Comments are closed.