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Since 2014, the Utah Diabetes and Metabolism Research Center (UDMRC) has enhanced collaboration, innovation, and rigor within the university’s diabetes and metabolism research community.

Our 100+ investigators organize into two robust, multi-disciplinary Interest Groups: Metabolism Interest Group (MIG) and Health Behaviors Interest Group (HBIG).  UDMRC investigators have made seminal and paradigm shifting discoveries, including:

  • Dr. June Round and colleagues elucidated the components of the microbiome that cause age-associated development of pre-diabetes (Science, 2019)
  • Dr. Scott Summers and colleagues identified a new therapeutic strategy to lower ceramides and reverse pre-diabetes (Science, 2019)
  • Dr. Cynthia Berg and colleagues have demonstrated that social relationships are critical across the lifespan for supporting health behaviors, challenging the long-established view that the goal of adolescent diabetes management is “independence” (Developmental Review, 2017)
  • Dr. Adam Hughes and colleagues described a new mechanism of cysteine toxicity that explains age-dependent decreases in mitochondrial function (Cell, 2020)
  • Dr. Michelle Litchman and colleagues uncovered an underground exchange of diabetes medications and supplies (Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology, 2019), which led to the passing of Utah House Bill 207, which caps the cost of insulin at $30 per month
  • Dr. Matthew Bettini and colleagues discovered how the body—early in life—establishes a bacterial surveillance system that distinguishes the microbiome components that aid in nutrition and health from those that cause disease (Nature, 2021)
  • Building on their basic science research, Dr. Jared Rutter and colleagues initiated a clinical trial with a novel inhibitor of PAS-kinase to treat non-alcoholic steatohepatitis.

Learn more about diabetes and metabolism discoveries.

Activities

We host a number of activities to support researchers, faculty, and students in diabetes research.

Our activities include the following:

  • Regularly occurring seminars in metabolism and health behaviors research
  • Research symposia
  • Pilot and feasibility research awards
  • Education and training opportunities for future researchers and clinicians
  • Faculty recruitment and mentoring
  • Supporting world class cores
  • Outreach activities 

Leadership

Scott Summers, PhD

Distinguished Professor and Chair
Department of Nutrition and Integrative Physiology
Email: scott.a.summers@health.utah.edu

Jared P. Rutter, PhD

HHMI Investigator
Distinguished Professor of Biochemistry
Email: rutter@biochem.utah.edu

Angela Fagerlin, PhD

Professor and Chair
Department of Population Health Sciences
Email: angie.fagerlin@hsc.utah.edu

Contact Us

Bridget Hughes, PhD

Director, Research Program Development
Senior Vice President of Health Sciences, Research Unit
Phone: 801-585-9304
Email: bridget.hughes@hsc.utah.edu

Samantha Weeks, BS

Events & Communications Manager
Senior Vice President of Health Sciences, Research Unit
Phone: 443-417-3711
Email: samantha.weeks@hsc.utah.edu