Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
4301 Jones Bridge Road
Bethesda, Maryland 20814
Insulin secretion from pancreatic b-cells is tightly regulated by plasma glucose levels as well as circulating hormones and locally released neurotransmitters. Defects in the responsiveness of the b-cell to these signals lead to the development of type II diabetes mellitus. The goal of this laboratory is to elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in physiological regulation of insulin secretion, and how these pathways are involved in the pathogenesis of diabetes. Since previous studies have shown that changes in b-cell membrane potential and intracellular Ca2+ are crucial steps in regulated insulin secretion, our particular focus is on the modulation of b-cell electrical activity and intracellular Ca2+ levels by nutrient and neurohormonal signals.