73rd Scientific Sessions: Interview with Researcher Christoph Buettner

Welcome back to the American Diabetes Association’s 73rd Scientific Sessions.
I’m Anna Baker here in Chicago, with Dr. Christoph Buettner of the Icahn School of
Medicine at Mt. Sinai in New York City.
Welcome to the meeting. >> Glad to be here.
>> Now, you are a recipient of a Career Development Research Grant from the
Association. How has that affected your career?
>> It really gave a big boost and it provides critical support for diabetes
research. And since the NIH has to cut, because of
budget reasons, funding. This is critical.
>> Well, we’re glad that it was of assistance to you.
as a scientist you could have gone into any dia, any field, so why diabetes?
>> And indeed, I did. I first started off working on the
thyroid gland and work on selenium, but then as a clinician, I realized that
diabetes is just such an overwhelming problem.
And if you were dad or your grandfather eventually get a heart attack than off
the reason is diabetes. So I, I changed fields because I also
feel that the opportunity for discovery is in diabetes are, are exciting, are
really great. >> So, let’s talk a little bit about
your work. Tell me about your work in the roll in
the brain in regulating metabolism. That sound’s really interesting.
>> Yeah, so I guess over the last two decades, its been more and more
appreciated that the brain plays an important role in controlling blood
sugar, regulating metabolism in the liver, and regulating metabolism in
adipose tissue and we’re trying to understand how this happens.
What the role of hormones such as insulin and leptin working in the brain are in
controlling these [UNKNOWN]. >> diabetes is clearly a complex
disease. I know this resource will really help
people affected by it in the future. >> I think it already does in the sense
that diseases such as shift it’s not a disease but shift work, for example,
messes up this brain control of metabolism.
And just understanding then the brain the stress really affects these brain
pathways. and as a diabetic you really need to live
a balanced life, you know, being in harmony with your surrounding is, is
really important. >> Now, I understand you’re involved in
another project about binge-drinking and its effect on insulin resistance.
Can you tell me a little bit about that? >> Yeah.
So, so there is an epidemiological association between binge-drink and
diabetes. So in other words, if you, as a college
student, just have a history of binge-drinking, meaning you drink four or
five drinks on a weekend. And, otherwise, you don’t really drink
much. That already is sufficient to cause
[INAUDIBLE] or to, to, give you a history of increased likelihood of developing
diabetes. And so, we then tested in animals whether
the binge-drinking does that or whether, for example, an alteration of food intake
does it. It turns out that the alcohol cause
inflammation in the hypothalamus. And if you just prevent that from
happening then you prevent this pre-diabetic state that binge drinking
caused. >> Well, that’s really useful work.
Thank you for everything that you do to help us stop diabetes, and have a great
time in Chicago. >> I will.
Thank you. >> The American Diabetes Association
pathway to stop diabetes. It’s a whole new initiative to funding
merging diabetes researchers just like Dr.
Buettner over the next decade. Pathway to Stop Diabetes will provide
crucial support to researchers focusing on innovative ideas and approaches to
diabetes so that we can ultimately end this deadly epidemic.
We’re currently accepting nominations for the first round of awards through August
16th, 2013. Learn more at diabetes.org/pathway.
And for more interviews from the scientific sessions in Chicago, stay
tuned to diabetes.org/breakingnews. [MUSIC].

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