The Mantzoros research group conducts independent investigations and
collaborates on several projects with experts from national and
international institutions. Our projects aim to:
Investigate the etiology, underlying molecular mechanisms and
pathophysiological links between obesity/adipose tissue, diabetes,
cardiovascular disease, and malignancies.
Explore the role of promising new classes of anti-obesity
medications including leptin and other peptides such as
adiponectin, serotonin receptor agonists, and incretins such as
GLP-1 analogues in the treatment of obesity and the metabolic
syndrome (insulin resistance, diabetes, hypertension,
Investigate the roles of leptin and neuropeptides in obesity as
well as the mechanisms underlying their roles.
Investigate new molecular targets for the treatment of obesity,
diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and endocrine malignancies.
Perform "proof of concept studies" involving leptin, GLP-1, and
neuropeptide agonist administration in humans to fully elucidate
their role in human physiology and disease.
Specific examples of ongoing research projects are outlined below.
The Mantzoros research group utilizes genomics-bioinformatics, molecular
biology, and human investigation tools to discover and study novel
molecules, especially adipokines, important in the pathogenesis of
diabetes, obesity, and associated disease states, including cardiovascular
disease and malignancies. Our animal physiology and molecular biology
studies specifically examine:
The role of hypothalamic neuropeptides and adipocyte secreted
hormones in energy homeostasis/ obesity and insulin resistance/
The role of new therapeutic agents important in the treatment of
eating disorders and the metabolic syndrome.
The role of adiponectin in the diagnosis and treatment of several
Leptin and adipokine signaling in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo
(rodents and humans).
The biology of molecules upstream of adiponectin, such as PPAR-γ
and PGC-1α, as well as other related molecules including irisin.
We conduct large-scale epidemiologic investigations, including
cross-sectional, case control, and cohort studies, to examine:
Obesity associated malignancies.
Psychological mediators of risk and predictors of diabetes and
cardiovascular disease in diabetic individuals in the context of
the Nurses Health Study and the Health Professionals Study.
The Metabolic syndrome in HIV-positive patients.
The etiology, clinical manifestations, and response to bariatric
surgery in obese patients.
Our clinical research studies focus on:
Randomized clinical trials in obese patients with diabetes
including the Look AHEAD study, i.e. a study of health outcomes in
response to weight-loss. In a national multi-center clinical trial,
the Look AHEAD study, we examine the long-term effects of an
intensive lifestyle intervention program designed to achieve and
maintain weight loss by decreasing caloric intake and increasing
physical activity in overweight volunteers with type 2 diabetes.
Interventional placebo-controlled trials for the treatment of
diabetes and obesity.