Daniel L. Smith, Ph.D., instructor in the UAB Department of Nutrition Sciences, has been selected as an Ellison Medical Foundation New Scholar in Aging. The awards provide support for investigators in the first three years after their postdoctoral training, when they are establishing their own labs; the funds enable young scientists to staff laboratories, collect preliminary data and organize research programs of sufficient momentum to obtain ongoing support from other sources.
Smith is studying calorie restriction and glucose regulation. Growing evidence suggests that calorie restriction is associated with longevity. Studies indicate that reduction in glucose levels is a byproduct of calorie restriction and may be part of the mechanism by which it works. Smith is studying Acarbose, a compound that inhibits carbohydrate digestion and glucose absorption, to see if it can mimic the effects of calorie restriction in mice.
New Scholar candidates are nominated by U.S. medical institutions and universities for their outstanding promise in aging research. The Ellison Medical Foundation supports basic biomedical research on aging relevant to understanding lifespan-development processes and age-related diseases and disabilities.