The purpose of this proposal is to renew the Training Program in Nutritional Metabolism, a highly successful Program to train basic, clinical and translational scientists in nutrition-related research. The goal of the Program is to train researchers in a broad number of related areas, focusing on 8 major areas of particular strength in metabolism and nutrition training across the Harvard Medical Campus. These areas also represent important areas of focus for NICHD, including pediatric nutrition, with emphasis on development and bone health, HIV, Vitamin D metabolism, genomic and metabolomics, epidemiology, obesity and appetite regulation, and nutrient trafficking. The grant draws from a large group of highly successful faculty across Harvard. The training faculty represents a number of Divisions, Schools and specific Programs across the Harvard Medical Campus. The Faculty has a great deal of experience in mentoring and has shown a long-track record of commitment in this regard. Their expertise spans the entire field of nutrition, from basic cell signaling to functional metabolomics and imaging, genomics and GWAS studies, epidemiology and large cohort studies, and detailed physiology investigations, unraveling neuronal signaling on appetite regulation and metabolic pathways of nutrient trafficking and body composition regulation. The outstanding efforts of this faculty have resulted in a significant success, as measured by a number of metrics in the first grant cycle, including numbers of articles published by trainees, academic success in promotion to faculty and procurement of independent grant support. The grant has not only fostered opportunities for individual success, but has encouraged a number of outstanding research collaborations between faculty and trainees, in different but often complementary fields of pediatric nutrition research. In the renewal application, a strong core curriculum in nutrition and a comprehensive mentoring structure will ensure that all Trainees develop a broad foundation in methods of nutrition research as well as an expertise in their chosen area of investigation. Core courses, a didactic curriculum, thrice yearly mentoring group meetings, and annual seminars will ensure program cohesiveness and foster multidisciplinary research collaboration. The proposal seeks to fund 4 slots/year and is led by a well-respected PI, Associate Director, Executive Steering Committee, and a newly added External Advisory Board. The demand for the Program has been very significant during its first cycle. Funds are now requested to renew Program for a second 5 year funding cycle.

Public Health Relevance

of the proposed grant relates to the large unmet need for training in translational nutrition research and the special populations served by this grant including pediatric and HIV-infected patients, for whom very little training specificall in nutrition research is available in the United States. The proposed grant involves a highly committed and well-accomplished faculty to accomplish this purpose and meet this need.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1-DRG-D (55))
Program Officer
Raiten, Daniel J
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Massachusetts General Hospital
United States
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Farr, Olivia M; Mantzoros, Christos S (2018) Obese individuals with type 2 diabetes demonstrate decreased activation of the salience-related insula and increased activation of the emotion/salience-related amygdala to visual food cues compared to non-obese individuals with diabetes: A preliminary stu Diabetes Obes Metab 20:2500-2503
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Farr, O M; Mantzoros, C S (2017) Obese individuals with more components of the metabolic syndrome and/or prediabetes demonstrate decreased activation of reward-related brain centers in response to food cues in both the fed and fasting states: a preliminary fMRI study. Int J Obes (Lond) 41:471-474
Farr, Olivia M; Li, Chiang-Shan R; Mantzoros, Christos S (2016) Central nervous system regulation of eating: Insights from human brain imaging. Metabolism 65:699-713
Bachmann, Katherine N; Bruno, Alexander G; Bredella, Miriam A et al. (2016) Vertebral Strength and Estimated Fracture Risk Across the BMI Spectrum in Women. J Bone Miner Res 31:281-8
Farr, Olivia M; Tsoukas, Michael A; Triantafyllou, Georgios et al. (2016) Short-term administration of the GLP-1 analog liraglutide decreases circulating leptin and increases GIP levels and these changes are associated with alterations in CNS responses to food cues: A randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Metabolism 65:945-53
Farr, Olivia M; Upadhyay, Jagriti; Gavrieli, Anna et al. (2016) Lorcaserin Administration Decreases Activation of Brain Centers in Response to Food Cues and These Emotion- and Salience-Related Changes Correlate With Weight Loss Effects: A 4-Week-Long Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Double-Blind Clinical Trial. Diabetes 65:2943-53
Farr, Olivia M; Sofopoulos, Michail; Tsoukas, Michael A et al. (2016) GLP-1 receptors exist in the parietal cortex, hypothalamus and medulla of human brains and the GLP-1 analogue liraglutide alters brain activity related to highly desirable food cues in individuals with diabetes: a crossover, randomised, placebo-controlled Diabetologia 59:954-65

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