- The Boudina Laboratory
The Boudina laboratory aims to elucidate the molecular mechanisms involved in weight gain and adipose tissue expansion in diet-induced obesity. Her group employs state-of-the-art stem cell technologies to study development of the intra-abdominal/visceral adipose depot that is critically involved in the pathogenesis of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Dr. Boudina is also an expert in myocardial energetics and the director of the Utah Metabolic Phenotyping Core.
- The Jalili Laboratory
The Jalili laboratory evaluates nutritional interventions as a means to reduce the incidence of cardiovascular disease. A particular emphasis is on high blood pressure, which greatly increases the risk of cardiac hypertrophy, myocardial infarction, arrhythmia, and heart failure. Ongoing projects dissect the influence of macronutrient consumption (e.g. alterations in fat/carbohydrate/protein ratios) and dietary phytochemicals on disease risk.
- The Jordan Group
The Jordan group researches pediatric nutrition, obesity prevention, and nutrition informatics. Recent interests have involved assessing way to measure adiposity in pre-term infants and application of informatics approaches to understand behavioral and economic determinants in parental food choices.
- The Martin Laboratory
The Martin laboratory focuses on neuromuscular function, metabolic cost, and fatigue. Applications for this research range from basic aspects of neuromuscular function to human performance in various settings including sport, disease, rehabilitation, and aging. The group maintains an active interest in identifying novel means of treating and preventing metabolic disorders using single leg cycling exercise and/or prolonged low intensity exercise in workplace and classroom settings.
- The Metos Group
The Metos group is informed through its work in community and clinical health and nutrition. Through such collaborations with researchers in the College of Health, Behavioral Science and Health, and Family and Preventive Medicine, her program evaluates local and national school health policies, particularly as they relate to obesity. A particular focus is on policy and systems approaches, seeking to understand how feasible, evidence-based alterations in the built environment can influence energy balance and improve health.
- Utah Vascular Research Lab
The Utah Vascular Research Lab (UVRL) has a longstanding interest in oxygen transport from air to tissue, with a current research interest revolving around the link between vascular and skeletal muscle function. One of the many potential candidates is the role of oxidative stress in the regulation/dysregulation of skeletal muscle metabolism and vascular control. Professor Richardson also directs the Utah Vascular Research Laboratory which provides state-of-the-art methods for assessing muscle and vascular function in humans (e.g. measurement of vessel diameter and blood flow by high-resolution ultrasound Doppler; magnetic resonance techniques to measure skeletal muscle perfusion, metabolism, and oxygenation in real-time; catheter studies allowing for the delivery of compounds to limbs; electromyographic activity of exercising skeletal muscle, etc.).
- The Summers Laboratory
The Summers laboratory studies the relationship between impaired fat metabolism and the development of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. His group discovered that a particular derivative of fat, termed ceramide, is one of the more toxic metabolites which accumulates in mammals prone to metabolic disorders. His current research efforts are directed at assessing the therapeutic potential of modulating levels of ceramides in the treatment of diabetes and heart disease and elucidating the molecular networks controlling ceramide production and action.
- The Symons Laboratory
The Symons laboratory investigates vascular function in response to pathophysiological (e.g., obesity/type 2 diabetes, ischemia, hypertension), physiological (e.g., physical exercise), and nutritional (e.g., polyphenolic compounds) interventions. Recent studies have focused on the cellular mechanisms through which ectopic fats alter vascular reactivity, concluding that ceramides are obligate intermediates linking saturated fatty acids to the impairment in blood vessel reactivity. Ongoing studies are investigating molecular mechanisms responsible for ceramide-mediated vascular dysfunction.
- The Velayutham Laboratory
The Babu laboratory studies mechanisms through which metabolic byproducts influence endothelial inflammation and vascular function. A number of current projects focus on the use of natural products as a means to prevent oxidative stress in the vascular endothelium.