Division V

Translational Diabetology

Prof. Dr. Andreas L. Birkenfeld

Head of Division

Dr. Anica Kurzbach

Deputy Head of Division

Research Focus

  • Our department is propelled by curiosity to understand how type 2 diabetes develops and what this may tell us about potential new therapeutic approaches. The study of different plasma membrane transporters as targets for therapeutic interventions in diabetes, obesity and metabolism associated fatty liver disease serves as a showcase.
  • We are particularly curious to learn how organs intercommunicate in the context of metabolic disease processes and how metabolism shapes the aging process.
  • To achieve our goals we combine our expertise in molecular biochemical approaches (Prof. Dr. R. Lammers), cell culture studies using human primary cells (Prof. D. Siegel-Axel), animal models (Dr. Anica Kurzbach, Prof. A. Birkenfeld) and translational clinical studies (Prof. A. Birkenfeld).

Current Projects

  SLC Transporters in Metabolic Disease
  Characterization of ectopic human adipose tissue and interaction between liver, pancreas and kidney

  • How metabolism shapes aging and longevity
  • Regulation of insulin signalin Regulation of insulin receptor expression by the Akt-activating protein Girdin
  • Protein tyrosine phosphatases and their role in insulin signalin
  • Identifying molecular mechanism underlying diabetes risk