Metabolism, Obesity & Diabetes
Obesity and associated metabolic complications greatly affect older adults and are associated with many age-related conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, stroke, some cancers, and osteoarthritis. Our research ranges from a cellular approach to determine the role of specific proteins within adipocytes in the development of obesity to an approach using a synergistic combination of randomized trials, short-term clinical studies, community interventions and epidemiological associations to understand the dietary, biobehavioral, and cultural barriers to adherence to healthy dietary patterns.
Key research objectives
• To determine the role and mechanisms by which interferon related factor 8 (IRF8) and/or ACSL4 adipocyte expressions is regulated in diet-induced obesity and modulates the development of diet-induced obesity and associated metabolic complications.
• Determine nutritional factors, including meal patterns and novel dietary composition factors (e.g., types of dietary fiber and salt), that influence adherence to calorie restriction regimens to improve weight regulation and reduce metabolic aging.
• Define the cellular pathways by which obesity, obesigenic diets, and the intake of the 1-carbon nutrients modulate the risk of developing common cancers