David MarcinekDepartment of Radiology, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA, USA F1000 Faculty Member (since 02 July 2009)
BIOGRAPHYDavid Marcinek previously worked with Kevin Conley as an Associate Faculty Member to evaluate the literature relevant to their research interests from July, 2009 to August, 2011.
Associate Professor, Department of Radiology, University of Washington
• 1989-1993 BA Biology, Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, MI
• 1993-2000 PhD Physiology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA
• 2000-2005 Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Mitochondria play a key role in integrating cellular energetics and the control of cell survival. As a result they are a critical element in aging and many degenerative diseases. We believe that an integrated study of mitochondrial energetics in the living organism is required for a mechanistic understanding of mitochondrial dysfunction in aging and disease. To that end, we have developed novel methods to directly measure mitochondrial function in vivo. Optical and magnetic resonance spectroscopies provide independent measures of oxygen and ATP fluxes in the intact animal. By independently measuring these fluxes we determine several parameters of mitochondrial energetics in skeletal muscle, including the coupling of ATP production to oxygen consumption. We have found that mitochondria in mouse skeletal muscle become less efficient with age, which results in a reduction in the ATP produced per oxygen consumed. This reduced efficiency can lead to an energetic stress on the cell and may impact cell survival.
Our current research focuses on two main questions:
1) to identify the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying changes in in vivo mitochondrial coupling and function with age and disease
2) to understand how physiological stress regulates mitochondrial biogenesis in skeletal muscle.
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