Research Topics

The Role of Vaspin in Adipose Tissue Thermogenesis and Energy Homeostasis

This project will test the hypothesis that vaspin is a regulator of oxidative metabolism and energy homeostasis. Aims are to identify nutritional and thermogenic factors inducing vaspin expression in adipose tissue and to investigate the impact of vaspin on thermogenesis in mice. Using a Klk7-/- mouse model it will be clarified whether vaspin mediates its effects by protease inhibition or acting as a cell surface ligand. Furthermore, it will be analyzed whether vaspin gene expression correlates with brown adipose tissue genes in visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue samples from an established tissue bank.

Financial Support: Funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft - SFB1052 C7.

Vaspin in Obesity and Metabolic Diseases

The main area of interest is research on adipose tissue derived molecules (adipokines) such as vaspin, focusing on their role in metabolism and in the pathogenesis of obesity and associated metabolic disorders. Understanding and subsequently modulating adipokine signalling is a promising approach to develop new strategies in the treatment of obesity and related diseases. In addition to the structural and functional analysis of this serpin-protease interaction, the focus of our research is the characterization of knock-out animal models to evaluate the physiological impact of lack of expression of these proteins or interacting molecules. Furthermore, we aim to identify adipokine induced proteins in target tissues such as liver and adipose tissue to investigate molecular mechanisms of adipokine regulation of cell differentiation and metabolism.

Financial Support: Funded by the European Union and the Free State of Saxony - EFRE 100121469

letzte Änderung: 20.04.2017


Dr. Dr. John T. Heiker
Institute of Biochemistry
University of Leipzig
Brüderstraße 34
D-04103 Leipzig

Telefon: +49 341 97-36990