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Marie-Eve Piche

MD; PhD (Hons); FRCPC

Clinical Research Training Fellow

My work focuses on understanding the effect of diet composition on human liver and cardiac fat accumulation, metabolism and function. Obesity is recognised as a heterogeneous condition in which individuals with a similar body mass index (BMI) may have distinct metabolic and cardiovascular disease risk profiles. Excess body fat mass is often associated with the storage of fat in non-adipose tissue organs, such as skeletal muscle, liver, pancreas and heart; this is known as ectopic fat deposition. 

It is suggested that ectopic fat accumulation triggers pathological metabolic responses that subsequently affect the risk of developing obesity-related metabolic diseases including insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and cardiovascular diseases. It has been suggested that specific dietary nutrients may play an important role in the metabolic health and function by altering fatty acid metabolism within the liver and leading to the accumulation of liver fat; which may influence the cardiac fat content, metabolism and function. As part of my postdoctoral training, I am using nutritional-labelled substrates (stable-isotope tracers) and magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy techniques to study the influence of specific dietary nutrients on liver and cardiac metabolism in humans in vivo. This work will contribute to progress understanding about the role of dietary nutrients in the development of metabolic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease.  

I am a certified cardiologist from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. I completed my PhD (Board of Honor) on cardiovascular risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes in Laval University, Canada. My main clinical and academic interests are in cardiac metabolism, lipid metabolism, diabetes, obesity and heart disease.