Jung Han Kim, Ph.D., a professor in the departments of biomedical research and clinical and translational science at the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, recently received two national grant awards for her genetics and molecular-based diabetes and obesity research.

Diabetes and obesity are chronic conditions of particular interest to the Appalachian region, where the obesity and diabetes rates are highest in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  In many counties in the region, the rate of diagnosed diabetes exceeds 10 percent and obesity prevalence is more than 30 percent.

Kim received a $440,405, three-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study genes causing diabetes by analyzing the interaction between genes and diet. This particular award is funded through an NIH program known as R15, or Academic Research Enhancement Awards  (AREA), which is aimed at supporting small-scale research projects that strengthen the research environment at their institutions.

Kim is also the recipient of a $154,000 two-year grant from the American Heart Association for a study that tests links between genetic variants and obesity susceptibility.

Kim’s long-term research focuses on understanding the underlying causes of Type 2 diabetes, obesity and related conditions. The research findings will provide new potential targets for intervention and contribute to the prevention of the diseases.

For more information about the research efforts underway at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, please visit jcesom.marshall.edu/research

Originally from Sheanna Spence for Marshall University Communications