MCW researcher to study mechanisms involved in diabetes

May 1, 2014

The Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) has received a four-year, $1.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to study the biochemical causes of beta cell destruction in diabetes.

John A. Corbett, Ph.D., professor and chairman of biochemistry, is the principal investigator of the grant.

Autoimmune, or insulin-dependent diabetes, is characterized by an inflammatory reaction around the islets in the pancreas, and followed by destruction of beta cells. The beta cells produce insulin, which is necessary for the body to maintain and control glucose levels. When the pancreas is no longer able to produce insulin, people with diabetes must constantly test blood glucose levels and either inject insulin or ingest sugars to maintain the correct balance.

Autoimmune diabetes can also affect the heart, kidneys, blood vessels, nerves, and eyes.

In this project, Dr. Corbett’s lab will learn more about the cellular mechanisms responsible for the death of beta cells, and to identify naturally occurring mechanisms by which beta cells protect themselves against other cellular threats such as free radicals and cytokines, which are proteins that act as mediators and regulators of immune processes.

The long range goals of this project are to identify potential therapeutic strategies aimed at halting or slowing beta cell loss as a treatment or potential cure for autoimmune diabetes.

This project is funded by NIH grant R01DK052194-18A1.

Community Watch

» Anodyne Coffee plans to open location in Wauwatosa Village Updated:  7/29

» Initial Reaction Podcast: Menomonee Falls baseball virtuoso Ty Weber and Big Ten Media Day Updated:  7/29

» Wauwatosa West girls basketball coach Ashley Imperiale resigns 7/26

» Store owners, police weigh in on string of protests at Mayfair mall Updated:  7/26

» Tosa police will not release squad video of officer-involved shooting Updated:  7/25

» Wauwatosa school district files lawsuit against WIAA over conference realignment Updated:  7/25

» Protest over fatal shooting forces brief closure of Mayfair Mall 7/23

» Reports into fatal Wauwatosa police shooting delivered to DA 7/22

» Social media story on the storms rolling through Milwaukee area 7/21

» Business Spotlight: Cranky Al's has grown from desperation to a Wauwatosa institution Updated:  7/20

» Initial Reaction Podcast: Wisconsin Badgers football, WIFCA All-Star game 7/20

» Michaelis leads Wauwatosa East past rival West in regional 7/20

» Milwaukee County Chargers earn overtime win over Muskego 7/20

» Activists push DA for disclosure on police killing in Wauwatosa 7/19

» Video: How a Pokémon Go newbie experienced the craze playing in Wauwatosa Updated:  7/19

» Tosa police, firefighters celebrated during First Responders Fest 7/18

» Ray's Wine & Spirits in Tosa celebrates 55 years with public party 7/15

» Wauwatosa's Relay for Life event slated for July 22 7/14

» Wauwatosa Mayor Kathy Ehley receives award for business leadership 7/14

» Video: Mayfair Collection's Bartolotta restaurants billed as 'triple threat' Updated:  7/14

» Bus rapid transit route clears two hurdles 7/13

» A look at the French restaurant Cafe Grace, opening Tuesday in Wauwatosa 7/13

» Wauwatosa West baseball team drops four of last five games 7/12

» Wauwatosa East baseball team falls to Marquette in Greater Metro semifinals 7/12

» Coalition for Justice, Black Lives Matter protest in Milwaukee, Tosa Updated:  7/12

View All Posts Got a tip? Welcome rss

Best Summer Ever


We've made it easy for you to get out and go this summer. From hitting the trails for a bike ride or walk, to where to find beer gardens in the area, to the best places to swim in Waukesha County to the best summer drinks and summer reads, check out our 2016 summer guide.



Hidden Tosa


"Hidden Tosa" is a semi-regular feature where our Wauwatosa reporter explores the closed down and closed off parts of Wauwatosa.