University of Wisconsin
School of Medicine and Public Health

Diabetes Research

UW diabetes research programs in the division of Endocrinology span investigations into fundamental aspects of pancreatic beta cell biology and the pathogenesis of type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes, and clinical research on diabetes treatment and management.

Learn About UW Diabetes Research Laboratories

Dawn Davis | UW diabetes research, type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes research

Dr Dawn Davis' Laboratory

Pancreatic beta cell biology & the mechanisms of beta cell proliferative response

Michelle Kimple | UW diabetes research, type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes research

Dr. Michelle Kimple’s Laboratory

Pancreatic beta cell biology & role of GPCR pathways in pathogenesis of diabetes

Dudley Lamming | mTOR pathway and diabetes research

Dr. Dudley Lamming’s Laboratory

Role of mTOR pathway on pathogenesis of diabetes

Dr. Matthew Merrins - diabetes research - pancreatic beta cell metabolism

Dr. Matthew Merrins’ Laboratory

Pancreatic beta cell biology & nutrient metabolism in beta cells

Dr. Feyza Engin - type 1 diabetes research, pancreatic beta cell research

Dr. Feyza Engin’s Laboratory 

Pathogenesis of type 1 diabetes & mechanisms of beta cell destruction

Research Focus Areas: 

Type 1 Diabetes Research

The initiating event in type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune attack on insulin-producing cells. Type 1 diabetes research studies at UW investigate the mechanism of this attack to understand how to prevent it. Our faculty members are also developing new approaches to increasing pancreatic beta cell mass in type 1 diabetics, thereby restoring insulin production.

Type 2 Diabetes Research

Frequently associated with obesity, type 2 diabetes occurs when insulin production decreases and/or the body becomes resistant to insulin, preventing efficient regulation of blood glucose levels. Type 2 diabetes research at UW focuses on understanding and preventing this dysfunction, as well as generating improved therapies and diabetes management approaches.

Pancreatic Beta Cell Biology

To develop new therapies to prevent, treat, and manage diabetes, several of our faculty are investigating pancreatic beta cells, the body’s insulin-producing cells. University of Wisconsin diabetes research investigators are focusing on how these cells proliferate and how pulses of insulin release are triggered.  

Clinical Diabetes Research

Translating diabetes research breakthroughs to the clinic improves patients’ lives through better treatment and diabetes management. UW Health is a study site for several clinical trials investigating new medications and devices for the treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. To learn more about volunteering for a research study in Wisconsin, visit the UW Institute for Clinical and Translational Research