Research is concerned with the factors influencing the development of both type one and type two diabetes in man.
The Endocrine Pharmacology group focuses on the signalling pathways that regulate insulin secretion, pancreatic beta-cell growth and viability. As such, the research is concerned with the factors influencing the development of both type one and type two diabetes in man.
In type one diabetes, the emphasis is directed towards studies of the role of viral infection as a means to promote autoimmunity against beta-cell antigens. The aim is to gain an improved understanding of the mechanisms by which immune cells are recruited to the islets of Langerhans and how they alter beta-cell function and viability.
In relation to type two diabetes, the group is investigating the mechanisms by which dietary fatty acid components can influence beta-cell viability and, in particular, it aims to define the pathways by which certain unsaturated fatty acid molecules exert cytoprotection. Alongside this, the cytoprotective actions of important anti-inflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin-4, are also under study.