The overall aim of the research in integrative physiology is to discover and validate targets important in metabolic disease, for example glucose homeostasis and Type 2 diabetes mellitus.
The integrative physiology research group focuses on mechanisms underlying metabolic disorders with particular, but not exclusive, focus on insulin resistance in skeletal muscle.
Using novel methodology developed in the group to incubate and analyse human skeletal muscle samples ex-vivo, we were the first to demonstrate defects in insulin stimulation of intracellular signalling molecules in patients with insulin resistant type 2 diabetes mellitus.
The effects of exercise and muscle contraction in regulation of insulin sensitivity both whole body and in muscle is also a key area of investigation, as are effects of skeletal muscle immobility and/or denervation.
Clinical investigations in, parallel with primary human skeletal muscle cultures, where skeletal muscle cells are grown in vitro from patient biopsies, and model organisms are used to approach metabolic disease from a multidisciplinary angle in order to address gene and protein regulation, cell physiology and whole body metabolism.
The Strategic Research Programme in Diabetes
The group is part of the newly formed Strategic Research Programme in Diabetes (SRP Diabetes) at Karolinska Institutet, of which Juleen Zierath is the Director.
Exercise changes the DNA
The research group has previously published an internationally acclaimed study in the journal Cell Metabolism.