Bogan, Jonathan S., MD
Diet-induced insulin resistance in adipocytes
General Research Subject: Insulin Resistance Pre Diabetes
Focus: Insulin Action
Type of Grant: Basic Science
Project Start Date: January 1, 2012
Project End Date: December 31, 2014
What area of diabetes research does your project cover? What role will this particular project play in preventing, treating and/or curing diabetes?
Our research studies the mechanism by which insulin stimulates glucose (sugar) uptake from the blood into fat and muscle. We have identified a new component of this mechanism, which plays an important role in controlling insulin action and glucose uptake. This project studies how this mechanism works in fat, and how it is compromised by excessive caloric intake, particularly by fatty foods. The ability of insulin to cause glucose uptake into fat cells is compromised early on during the development of type 2 diabetes. Our work to understand how this occurs could lead to improved prevention and/or treatment of insulin resistance and diabetes.
If a person with diabetes were to ask you how your project will help them in the future, how would you respond?
Our work will lead to a better understanding of how insulin causes sugar to be absorbed from the bloodstream, and of how this mechanism of insulin action goes awry in people with type 2 diabetes. Ultimately, a better understanding of this process might help us to learn who is at increased risk to develop diabetes, how we might better prevent the development of diabetes, and how we might more effectively treat diabetes (and normalize blood sugars) in people who have it.
Why is it important for you, personally, to become involved in diabetes research? What role will this award play in your research efforts?
As a clinician, I have seen the devastating effect that diabetes can have on people's lives. My grandfather also had poorly controlled diabetes, and died when I was very young. I wanted to contribute to efforts to prevent or treat diabetes because of these experiences. I also felt that I could work in an area that has both fundamental, broad significance, as well as direct importance for an important public health issue. This was attractive to me (and still is!). This award is critical, especially at the current time when funding is very tight. The award will not only make possible the particular research project, which is important for diabetes, but will have a longer term impact to permit me to continue to work in this area for my career.
In what direction do you see the future of diabetes research going?
We will gain a better understanding of how genes and the environment interact, and of how we can control our risk of developing diabetes and its complications. There is still much to learn, and I am optimistic that the field is making progress.
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