Metabolism, Aging and Disease

Intermediary Metabolism





Krebs Cycle


John Jones


Research lines

Quantifying fructose metabolism by mesenteric adipocytes in mouse models

Development of oxygen-18 enriched water as a tracer of carbohydrate biosynthesis

Coupling of pentose phosphate pathway and fatty acid synthesis fluxes in different disease states

Quantifying nutrient metabolism in cultured fish


Intermediary metabolism refers to the intracellular processes by which nutrient carbons are biochemically transformed into storage or structural cell products. Our mission is to develop methodologies for measuring these processes in living systems. Our objectives include the application these measurements to better understand nutrient metabolism in diseases such as Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), whose increased incidences are in part related to changes in food intake. Our techniques are based on the use of non-radioactive stable-isotope metabolic tracers coupled with noninvasive assays of key metabolites that encode the labeling information from the tracers. Our expertise is in the use of high-resolution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques coupled with chemical derivatization of specific metabolites to acquire more precise information on the metabolic fate of the isotopic tracers. This in turn allows the development of more detailed and realistic metabolic flux models to describe nutrient metabolism. Currently, we are focused on the metabolism of fructose by the liver and other tissues. Fructose consumption in Western Societieshas sharply increased in recent decades and is implicated in the surge of T2D and NAFLD in these communities. Transformation of fructose into saturated fatty acids may play an important role in the onset and progression of these diseases.

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