Metabolic Physiology

Metabolism is the sum of the chemical reactions that take place within each cell of a living organism and that provide energy for vital processes and for synthesizing new organic material.

Metabolic research is undergoing a real resurgence as we seek to tackle questions relating to some of the major health challenges of our times. These efforts are being driven forward by technical advances which allow us to profile metabolism in far greater detail than ever before. As a field, metabolic physiology arguably touches on all other areas of physiology, and links can be found between approaches and ideas developed in response to seemingly diverse problems, making this an exciting and highly collaborative area in which to work.

Andrew Murray, Metabolic Physiology Theme Lead

Metabolic physiology is the cornerstone of all biological processes and as such is involved in diverse areas ranging from cardiac function to neuronal circuitry. This field is an exciting field to work in because of the huge impact we can have as metabolic physiologists on the health and well-being of society, especially in the current epidemic of metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Paul Meakin, Metabolic Physiology Theme Lead

Specialities in this Theme

CRACCardiovascular, respiratory & autonomic
CNCellular neurophysiology
CSCellular signalling
CPComparative physiology
GITGastrointestinal tract
HCMHeart & cardiac muscle
ICIon channels
MEPMicrovascular & endothelial physiology
MCMuscle contraction
PPPlacental & perinatal physiology
RPRenal physiology
RespRespiratory physiology
SFSensory functionsv
SMSmooth muscle

Theme Leads

Paul Meakin, Research Fellow, University of Leeds

I am a BHF Intermediate Basic Science Research Fellow and University Academic Fellow at the University of Leeds. My group works on non-communicable diseases and especially the link between diabetes, vascular function and dementia. Specifically, we are investigating the role of the Beta-site amyloid precursor protein cleaving enzyme 1, or BACE1, in the cardiovascular complications associated with metabolic disease (cardiometabolic disease).

I am indebted to the support that The Physiological Society has provided me by funding conference and training travel grants, as well as undergraduate studentships. These funds at key stages in my research career have proved vital in developing my skills (both research and supervisory) in order to allow me to establish my own research group. I am grateful for the opportunity to give back to The Society by becoming a Theme Lead for Metabolic Physiology. I plan to promote and integrate metabolic physiology with the other Themes within The Society.

Andrew Murray, Reader in Metabolic Physiology, University of Cambridge

I am a Reader in Metabolic Physiology at the University of Cambridge, where my group works on integrative mitochondrial physiology. We have broad interests in the factors that influence mitochondrial respiratory function in health and disease, and the impact this has in turn on the function of the cell, tissue, organ and organism. A major interest of ours lies in the response of mitochondria to hypoxia, and we have enjoyed many years of collaboration with the Xtreme Everest group investigating the metabolic response to high altitude and in disease states where hypoxia is an underlying factor.

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