The Division of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes offers a vibrant and growing research environment. Faculty and fellow research projects include both basic science and clinically-oriented projects aimed at understanding and treating endocrine disease. Particular areas of interest include the pathogenesis of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, the regulation of glucose metabolism, the regulation of bone growth and development, and the integrated response to hypoglycemia. These research projects receive funding from the NIH as well as from pharmaceutical sponsors.
Please see below to learn more about our investigators and their research efforts.
William E. Russell, M.D.
Dr. Russell's research investigates liver growth, metabolism, and regeneration. These studies have important implications for cell growth, whole body metabolism, and glucose regulation as it relates to diabetes. He is also the principle investigator for the Eskind Diabetes Center's involvement in the Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet. Learn more about Dr. Russell's research.
Justin Gregory, M.D., MSCI
Dr. Gregory's type 1 diabetes research seeks to mechanistically define the deleterious metabolic and cardiovascular effects of iatrogenic hyperinsulinemia caused by peripheral insulin delivery. He is working to translate these findings into therapeutic strategies that will restore an appropriate balance of insulin between the liver and insulin-sensitive peripheral tissues, such as hepatopreferential and oral insulin analogs and intraperitoneal insulin delivery. Ultimately, he aims to quantify the cardiovascular benefits gained when the appropriate insulin balance between hepatic and peripheral tissues is restored.
Dr. Gregory's previous research utilized the conscious, catheterized canine model to characterize factors that predispose patients to hypoglycemia. In one study, he and his colleagues found that infusing insulin into the peripheral blood stream (as occurs in type 1 diabetes) lead to much greater hypoglycemia compared to infusing the same amount of insulin into the hepatic portal vein (as occurs normally).
Dr. Gregory's research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health. He has presented his findings at international meetings of the American Diabetes Association and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes. His research has been published in Diabetes, The American Journal of Physiology and The Journal of Clinical Investigation.
Sarah Jaser, Ph.D.
Dr. Jaser studies risk and protective factors in adolescents with type 1 diabetes. She is currently examining the effects of adolescent coping, maternal adjustment, and parenting on adolescents’ glycemic control and quality of life. Next steps include developing and testing interventions to help mothers cope effectively with the stress of parenting adolescents with type 1 diabetes; innovative interventions to improve adolescents adherence; and investigating the relationship between neurocognitive deficits and coping in youth with type 1 diabetes.
Daniel Jensen Moore, M.D., Ph.D.
Dr. Moore's research seeks to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms that govern immune tolerance in order to prevent and reverse Type 1 Diabetes and enhance the success of organ transplantation. Learn more about Dr. Moore's research.
Ashley H. Shoemaker, M.D., MSCI
Dr. Shoemaker's research focuses on early-onset obesity. By identifying the precise pathophysiology underlying different forms of syndromic obesity, Dr. Shoemaker is working to develop weight loss interventions that target the specific area of energy imbalance. She has found that children with the genetic disorder pseudohypoparathyroidism have reduced energy expenditure, possibly leading to early weight gain. She is continuing her work with children with these children, including studies of their development, cognition and eating behaviors. Other current studies include a registry for children with a history of obesity onset before six years old and a drug trial for patients with obesity due to hypothalamic brain tumors. Learn More about Dr. Shoemaker's reseach.
Jill H. Simmons, M.D.
Research interests for Dr. Simmons include predicting, evaluating, and treating the long-term endocrine effects faced by survivors of childhood cancer. She is currently studying the bone health and vitamin D status of pediatric cancer patients from early treatment through long-term survivorship. She is also searching for early predictors of diabetes, insulin resistance, and other components of the metabolic syndrome in pediatric cancer patients, in hopes of developing prevention programs to ultimately improve both the quality and quantity of long-term survival. In addition, she continues to study the effects of celiac disease and type I diabetes on bone health. Learn more about Dr. Simmons' research.