Research on diabetes, metabolic and endocrine-related scientific investigations at the University of Arizona is active within several spheres of collaboration across the UA Health Sciences campus in Tucson, including the UA Division of Endocrinology itself, the UA College of Medicine – Tucson, UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health and UA College of Nursing. Directly affiliated with the division are the following resources:
UAHS Center for Disparities in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
The UA Health Sciences Center for Disparities in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism—led by Endocrinology Chief Lawrence J. Mandarino, PhD—serves as a nucleus for interdisciplinary studies that form the foundation for translation of biomedical research to advanced, evidence-based clinical care in the community. A major focus is to facilitate development of innovative approaches to delivery of care and prevention, serving a diverse population in one of the most high-risk yet underserved regions in the nation. The center also is working to create a biobank and research registry focused on obesity and type 2 diabetes risk in the Hispanic/Latino population, while also creating a biobank registry with patient bio-specimens that would be accessible to other studies focusing on other aspects of health of importance to the local community and broader population.
Quantitative Proteomics Lab
The Quanitative Proteomics Lab at the Department of Medicine in the UA College of Medicine – Tucson is a metabolomics- and proteomics-based facility that applies mass spectrometry-based technologies to significant biological problems. Instrumentation also allows for ion mobility spectrometry (IMS) of proteins within biological tissues. It is directed by Paul Langlais, PhD, and Natalie Barker. Contact us to discuss how proteomics, metabolomics and tissue imaging can be applied in your research.
Treatment, Research and Education of Adipose Tissue (TREAT) Program
The Treatment, Research and Education of Adipose Tissue (TREAT) Program at the University of Arizona, led by Karen Herbst, MD, PhD, was launched in the fall of 2015 with $1.5 million in seed funding from the Lipedema Foundation. Lipedema is a painful adipose tissue disorder (ATD) where abnormal fat tissue accumulates predominantly on hips, thighs and buttocks — it bruises easily and cannot be lost simply by exercise or dieting. Led by world-renowned ATDs expert, Karen Herbst, MD, PhD, the program has three aims: Treat people with fat disorders; perform cutting-edge research including advanced imaging, phenotyping and basic and translational science to develop better treatment regimens; and create educational material for all health care workers to broaden awareness and improve diagnoses and treatment of these conditions.
- Heddwen Brooks, PhD, Professor of Physiology — investigates the role of menopause and sex-related hormones on hypertension and diabetes, particularly how these diseases contribute to loss of kidney function and lead to renal failure.
- Janet Funk, MD, Professor, of Medicine, Nutritional Sciences — leads an NIH-funded cross-disciplinary translational research program investigating the pathogenesis and treatment of resorptive bone diseases, such as breast cancer bone metastases and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), with a particular focus on elucidating the metabolism and bioactivity of bone-protective plant-derived polyphenols.
- Sean Limesand, PhD, Professor of Animal Sciences, in the UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, studies the effects of hormonal and environmental factors of pregnancy specializing in fetal pancreas development, insulin secretion and glucose homeostasis.
- Ronald Lynch, PhD, Professor in the Department of Physiology, investigates how energy metabolism is integrated with function in nutrient-sensing cells, and cells of the vasculature. These studies relate directly to understanding the development of diabetes and its many complications.
- Leslie Ritter, RN, PhD, Professor from the Department of Neurology and the UA College of Nursing, studies the damaging effects of high-circulating glucose upon cerebral vascular tissues, and determines mechanisms by which people with diabetes suffer more severe brain injuries after a stroke.
How to Participate
Whether you’re a potential candidate to participate as a patient or subject in the study, you would like to participate as a “healthy volunteer” for the control group or you’re a research or clinical professional interested in collaborating with the research team—simply contact the study coordinator listed for each individual clinical research study above.
Other Research Studies