Scientists Who Discovered Insulin Secretion Gene Join Pacific Northwest Research Institute
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE |
March 28, 2007
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Amy Wales, Public Relations Manager, PNRI
Seattle (March 28th 2007) – President and Scientific Director Paul Robertson, M.D., announced today that Joseph Bryan, Ph.D., and Lydia Aguilar-Bryan, M.D., Ph.D., have joined the Pacific Northwest Research Institute (PNRI). The Bryans will serve as principal investigators and play a key role in expanding PNRI's research of the molecular mechanisms that affect glucose-stimulated insulin secretion.
"One very precise goal of PNRI is to relieve human suffering. We are in it to help people; that's why we do the work, and why the arrival of the Bryans to PNRI is so exciting – it marks a new era of collaboration that will lead to better understanding and treatment for diabetes," said Dr. Robertson.
The Bryan Laboratory famously located the high affinity sulfonylurea receptor gene, which regulates insulin secretion. They also pinpointed the role of potassium channels in the insulin secretion process and how these channels are affected by deficient potassium activity. Currently, the Bryan Lab studies mutations in patients with insulin secretory abnormalities, such as neonatal diabetes and hyperinsulinemic hypoglycemia – a secondary complication associated with type 2 diabetes.
"No question, the decision to move was easy," said Dr. Aguilar-Bryan. "Working at PNRI gives us the opportunity to partner with those at the forefront of diabetes research whose work is making a critical difference in people's lives."
Prior to joining PNRI, Dr. Joseph Bryan served as Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. Before that he pursued his post-doctorate at the University of California, Berkeley and earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Lydia Aguilar-Bryan served for many years as Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine as well as the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology at the Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Aguilar-Bryan holds a Ph.D. from the University of Texas, Health Science Center and a M.D. from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico.
About Diabetes: Diabetes takes many forms but is characterized by abnormally high glucose levels in the blood, resulting from the body's inability to produce insulin, the hormone that regulates blood glucose levels, as in type 1 diabetes, or a combination of insulin resistances and insulin deficiency, as in type 2 diabetes. Diabetes-related health complications are the leading cause of kidney failure, blindness in adults, and leg and foot amputations unrelated to injury in the United States. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), more than 20.8 million Americans have diabetes, though about one-third of them do not know they have the disease. An estimated 41 million additional Americans live with a condition known as pre-diabetes, putting them at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
About Pacific Northwest Research Institute (PNRI): PNRI is a 50 year-old independent non-profit biomedical and clinical research center located in Seattle, Washington and founded by Dr. William Hutchinson, Sr., who also founded the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The mission of PNRI is to support and conduct basic and clinical studies that lead to the prevention and cure of diabetes and its complications. PNRI's acclaimed team of 70 doctors and researchers is committed to applying scientific discoveries to the real improvement of health for people and families living with diabetes. For more information on PNRI and diabetes, please visit: www.pnri.org (this site).Home
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