Metabolic Studies Core

Director: Michael D. Jensen, M.D.

Test tubes

The Metabolic Studies Core is located at the metabolism laboratories at Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota GCRC. The Metabolic Studies Core provides access to established and state-of-the-art methods for studying energy metabolism and nutrient partitioning at the whole body level in humans and has upgraded its services to include similar measures in rodents. Measurements provided by the Metabolic Studies Core include measurements of energy metabolism using indirect calorimetry and assays of hormone concentrations through the Mayo Immunochemical Assay Core Laboratory. We also provide access to assays needed to measure in vivo lipolysis, lipid storage and oxidation, protein and glucose turnover using stable isotopes. In addition, body composition can be measured by DEXA at both the Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota GCRC.

Through this core laboratory, Center investigators receive advice and assistance from established investigators in the application of the techniques for studying energy metabolism and nutrient partitioning to relevant experimental questions. Consolidation of these methods in a single core laboratory is essential because of the cost of the equipment and the need to integrate the measures of body composition, energy expenditure, and nutrient partitioning in order to understand and interpret the data. This Core also provides access to software needed to accurately measure visceral fat from computed tomography (CT) scans.

The director of the Core is Dr. Michael Jensen who is an acknowledged expert on in vivo and tracer studies. This Core is visualized as the link between epidemiology based studies and more basic investigation. This Core will assist in the vertical integration of obesity research within the Minnesota Obesity Center.