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Brittany Gorres-Martens, Ph.D.

bgorresmartens@augie.edu

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Position:

  • Assistant Professor, Exercise and Sport Sciences
  • Augustana University

Education:

  • Ph.D., Molecular and Integrative Physiology, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
  • B.S., Nutritional Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD

Current Research:

My area of research expertise is type 2 diabetes (T2D). Specifically, exploring the interaction between exercise and estrogens on blood glucose regulation. Briefly, human and animal studies suggest that estrogens positively influence blood glucose regulation. The loss of estrogens results in an increased risk for T2D, and hormone replacement therapy can ameliorate this risk. In addition, the lack of estrogens results in fat deposition in the abdominal area, which is the biggest risk factor for skeletal muscle insulin resistance and T2D. Exercise is an established method of controlling blood glucose levels and decreasing fat stores. However, estrogens' role in regulating fat stores and blood glucose levels with and without exercise remains unknown.

My previous research suggests that specific activation estrogen receptor ? (ER?) can increase glucose uptake into the skeletal muscle and decrease abdominal fat storage. Likewise, exercise persists as one of the best known benefits for increasing skeletal muscle glucose uptake and decreasing body fat. However, whether or not estrogens provide an additional benefit along with exercise remains unknown.

My lab seeks to identify the mechanism by which ER? activation decreases abdominal fat storage and increases skeletal muscle glucose uptake with and without exercise.