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Richard Bertram


Speaker: Richard Bertram
Title: Why Do Insulin Levels Oscillate?
Affiliation: Florida State University
Date: Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Place and Time: Room 200, Love Building, 3:35 pm

Abstract. In non-diabetic humans, as well as in dogs, rats, and mice, insulin levels in the blood oscillate with a period of roughly 5 min. The oscillations have been shown to facilitate the actions of the liver in clearing glucose from the blood, and are lost in type II diabetics. This may contribute to be one of the difficulty in maintaining normal blood glucose levels in diabetics. Insulin is secreted by micro-organs in the pancreas and each of them exhibits oscillatory activity. In this presentation, I will discuss how combined mathematical modeling and experimental studies over more than a decade are revealing the biophysical mechanism for oscillatory islets activity. I will also discuss how a hybrid mathematical/microfluidic tool is being used to study possible mechanisms for the synchronization of islets.