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UIC DRTP Program Leadership

Executive Committee

Terry G. Unterman, MD – Program Director
Professor of Medicine, Physiology and Biophysics
Research interests: gene regulation, insulin signaling, FoxO transcription factors, regulation of hepatic carbohydrate and lipid metabolism.

Brian T. Layden, MD, PhD – Program Co-Director
Chief, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Associate Professor of Medicine, Physiology and Biophysics
Research interests: microbiome, short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) receptors in metabolic regulation and islet biology, genetics of diabetes, hexokinase DC1 in diabetes and physiology.

Martha L. Daviglus, MD, PhD
Edmund F. Foley Professor of Medicine, Director, Institute for Minority Health Research
Associate Vice Chancellor for Research, PI of the Chicago Field Center for the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)
Research interests: minority health, including obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular risk, especially in Hispanic and underserved communities.

Salman Khetani, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Bioengineering
Research interests: The Microfabricated Tissue Models laboratory ( fabricates in vitro models of the liver (animal and human) for studying the role of dietary and inflammatory triggers on the development and progression of non-alcoholic and alcoholic fatty liver diseases and how they affect diabetes outcomes. The lab develops state-of-the-art 3D culture techniques to maintain the phenotype of multiple types of liver cell types in vitro for prolonged culture to investigate disease mechanisms in collaboration with physician scientists.

Lauretta Quinn, PhD, BSN
Minnich Professor and Director, Center for Sleep and Health Research, Clinical Professor of Nursing, Department of Biobehavioral Research, College of Nursing
Research interests: psychological (e.g., quality of life), behavioral (e.g., diabetes self-management) and physiological (e.g., substrate response to exercise) aspects of diabetes; development and application of open- and closed-loop artificial pancreas systems in people with type 1 diabetes (with Dr. Ali Cinar).

Robert M. Sargis, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
Director, Physician-Scientist Development Program, Department of Medicine, Group Leader, ChicAgo Center for Health and Environment (CACHET)
Research interests: endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), environmental drivers of metabolic disease risk, insulin signaling, insulin secretion and islet biology, diabetes, obesity, lipid metabolism, environmental justice, health disparities

Pingwen Xu, PhD
Assistant Professor, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism, and Department of Physiology and Biophysics.
Research interests: neural pathways for energy balance, glucose homeostasis, binge eating/drinking, and other behaviors. We use chemogenetics/optogenetics, electrophysiology and neurotracing methods to establish physiological relevance of neural networks in the regulation of energy homeostasis, glucose balance and behaviors.

If you have specific questions about the process, please contact Terry Unterman, MD (Program Director) (