We are Cambridge University scientists investigating fat tissue. We think that fat tissue plays a central role in most health disorders in modern societies. We have just published a paper suggesting that a functional test of fat tissue could predi...
We are a team of scientists based in the Metabolic Research Laboratories, University of Cambridge. Our primary research focus is to understand the genetic and environmental factors influencing the function of white adipose tissue (fat). We think that appropriate function of fat tissue is central for human health. Impairments of fat tissue function cause nutrient deposition elsewhere in the body, leading to the development of type 2 diabetes, hearth disease and other related disorders.
Currently, the diagnosis for type 2 diabetes is based on fasting blood glucose and oral glucose tolerance test. These factors indicate how well pancreas secrete insulin, and how well the glucose is taken up from the circulation in response to secreted insulin. Importantly, impairments in either of the processes is a sign of advanced metabolic disease, when clinical and lifestyle interventions are much less effective than early measures directed to prevent disease development.
We have recently published a paper showing that mice with dysfunctional fat tissue exhibit normal glucose metabolism when they are young. However, they become much more insulin resistant when they get older compared to control mice. The impaired function of fat tissue in these mice at a young age cannot be identified using glucose tolerance test, but can be easily spotted after they eat too much of their regular food. We therefore think that a mixed nutrient tolerance test (in other words - a large meal) could identify individuals with impaired fat tissue function, and would encourage clinical or lifestyle interventions while their glucose metabolism is still normal.
Ask us anything related to the role of fat tissue, fat metabolism and nutrition, and we will do our best to answer your questions!
Link to the original research paper (Open access): https://tinyurl.com/y7tmxyc4
Link to the lay summary of the paper in 'The Conversation': https://theconversation.com/diabetes-new-test-could-detect-the-disease-much-earlier-101409
Edit1: Fixed the link to the paper.