BSc (Hons), PhD
Associate Professor of Diabetes and Metabolism
- BHF Senior Basic Science Research Fellow
I am heading the Metabolic Research Group together with Professor Fredrik Karpe. My research focuses on the alterations in metabolism with nutritional state and substrates (e.g. sugars, fatty acids) along with the associated metabolic consequences of obesity. We perform whole body human physiological studies to understand the metabolic integration between tissues.
The current focus of my research is on understanding liver fat metabolism, as perturbations in this have the potential to impact widely on metabolic health. Accumulation of fat within the liver underlies the spectrum of conditions known as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and this is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The liver is a major player in fat metabolism; it integrates endogenous and exogenous fatty acids and the accumulation or loss of liver fat represents the balance between input and removal pathways. However, the regulation of the metabolic partitioning of fatty acids within the human liver is poorly understood. We use a combination of approaches, including human in vivo, ex vivo, and in vitro cellular models along metabolically-labelled substrates (stable-isotope tracers) to probe relevant pathways involved liver fat metabolism. By understanding the regulation of these pathways, this may lead to interesting new therapeutic approaches to prevent and/or treat NAFLD.
I was awarded a British Heart Foundation Senior Fellowship in Basic Science in 2015. Prior to this, I was awarded the Gridlers’ Health Research Council (NZ) Career Development Fellowship, which enabled me to come and undertake post-doctoral work at the University of Oxford in 2004 and I held a British Heart Foundation Intermediate Fellowship in Basic Science from 2011-2015.
Compositional marker in vivo reveals intramyocellular lipid turnover during fasting-induced lipolysis.
Thankamony A. et al, (2018), Sci Rep, 8
Chylomicron-Derived Fatty Acid Spillover in Adipose Tissue: A Signature of Metabolic Health?
Piché M-E. et al, (2018), J Clin Endocrinol Metab, 103, 25 - 34
The isolation of primary hepatocytes from human tissue: optimising the use of small non-encapsulated liver resection surplus.
Green CJ. et al, (2017), Cell Tissue Bank, 18, 597 - 604
Influence of dietary macronutrients on liver fat accumulation and metabolism.
Parry SA. and Hodson L., (2017), J Investig Med, 65, 1102 - 1115
In vitro cellular models of human hepatic fatty acid metabolism: differences between Huh7 and HepG2 cell lines in human and fetal bovine culturing serum.
Gunn PJ. et al, (2017), Physiol Rep, 5