Our Current Initiatives

Brain Health

  • Initiating a landmark study on how diabetes and obesity contribute to Alzheimer’s disease
  • Exploring the effects of dietary intake of good versus harmful fats on memory
  • Producing data to support the “first in human” clinical trial of stem cells to treat Alzheimer’s disease 
  • Introducing a novel technology—advanced single-cell gene profiles — to identify changes in individual brain cells that promote dementia 
  • Studying brain structure via MRI and testing memory skills in individuals with diabetes to determine effects of disease over a 30-year period

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

  • Identifying how exposures to pesticides, metals, air pollution, or other industrial and consumer chemicals increase ALS risk and progression
  • Applying advanced computational tools to understand how genetics, the immune system, and cell metabolism interact with environmental exposures in persons with ALS, the goal being to make ALS a preventable disease 
  • Examining the benefits of repurposing currently approved anti-inflammatory drugs to treat ALS
  • Increasing patient and control participation in national drug trials at the Pranger ALS Clinic

Diabetes

  • Establishing diet recommendations (increase good & lessen harmful fats) to prevent neuropathy
  • Initiating a clinical trial to determine if surgical weight loss and/or exercise can prevent nerve
    damage and improve cognitive skills of patients with diabetes
  • Study why children and teenagers with obesity, prediabetes, and diabetes develop nerve damage
  • Repurposing an available anti-inflammatory drug for treating diabetic neuropathy 
  • Understanding how gut health affects nerve function in the brain and peripheral nerves

COVID-19

  • Creating a multidisciplinary Long COVID-19 Clinic to care for patients suffering from chronic complications and follow them through their recovery to better understand the disease and its long-term effects
  • Developing an innovative treatment for dangerously high blood sugar surges caused by COVID-19 in patients with diabetes
  • Initiating a clinical trial to identify inflammatory biomarkers that help predict how COVID-19 will affect patients with diabetes
  • Beginning a clinical trial to assess COVID-19’s long-term and permanent damage to brain, heart, and kidney