Doctoral candidate Anjaiah Katta receiving the 2009 Best Graduate student Research award from Dr. Niles Associate Dean for Research at the Joan C. Edwards SOM.

Diabetic Research Directives

The increasing worldwide incidence of diabetes in adults is predicted to soon reach epidemic proportions. It is currently estimated that about 23.5 million people in the United States have diabetes.

Type II diabetes is thought to be associated with an inability of skeletal muscle to properly extract glucose from our body's blood supply. Research in this area is dedicated to trying to understand how insulin resistance may affect the molecular signaling thought to regulate protein synthesis and degradation. The outcomes of this research are anticipated to lead to increase our knowledge of why diabetic patients may adapt differently from their non-diabetic counterparts to exercise- a key intervention for the treatment of metabolic syndrome and type II diabetes.

In addition to our muscle adaptation studies we are also examining the function of micro RNAs (miRNAs) during the initiation and development of metabolic syndrome. miRNAs are a class of highly conserved, noncoding RNAs involved in posttranscriptional gene regulation. Current efforts in this area are designed to determine if there is a relationship between circulating miRNA expression levels, blood glucose and changes in muscle and adipose tissue gene expression.

Mito Tracker staining of diabetic skeletal muscle
E staining of diabetic skeletal
ATPase staining of diabetic skeletal muscle