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The Animal Physiology Core (APC) provides for diabetes related phenotyping in small animal models. Services offered include the assessment of body composition, energy balance, glucose homeostasis, and transgenic animals models.


The objectives of the core are to provide:

  • Body composition: Whole-body composition analysis by chemical carcass analysis, dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), quantitative magnetic resonance (QMR), and micro-computed tomography (µCT)
  • Energy balance: Comprehensive assessments of metabolic rate (indirect calorimetry), food intake, fecal output, activity, and body temperature
  • Glucose homeostasis: Glucose and insulin tolerance testing
  • Transgenic animal models: Assistance with construct preparation, generation of transgenic/knock-out mice, husbandry and colony management, and genotyping


The APC emphasizes quality control in all aspects of its functions. All data is examined and quality controls performed in a manner that is specific for the multiple core methodologies. Aspects of these procedures are discussed below in the context of provided core services.

  1. Whole-body composition analysis
    • Chemical carcass analysis (CCA)
    • Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA)
    • Quantitative magnetic resonance (QMR)
    • Ex vivo imaging of small rodents using micro-computed tomography (µCT)
  2. Comprehensive assessments of metabolic rate (indirect calorimetry), food intake, fecal output, and activity
  3. Glucose homeostasis
    • Insulin tolerance test (ITT)
    • Glucose tolerance test (GTT)
    • Indwelling catheter cannulation
      • Jugular vein (insulin, glucose, tracer infusion)
      • Carotid artery (blood sampling; patent up to 2 weeks)
    • In vivo Glucose-Stimulated Insulin Secretion (GSIS)
    • Hyperinsulinemic-Euglycemic Clamp / Hypoglycemic Clamp / Hyperglycemic Clamp
      • Glucose infusion rate (GIR)
      • Glucose disposal rate (Rd)
      • Tissue-specific (2-Deoxy-D-glucose) uptake (Rg)
      • Hepatic glucose production (Endo Ra)
      • Glycolysis and lipid synthesis
      • Tissue-specific Glycogen synthesis
      • Plasma insulin and NEFA (basal vs. clamped)
      • Insulin signaling Western Blot from tissues snap-frozen at clamp termination
    • Primary cell isolation from mouse tissues
      • Hepatocyte
      • Adipocyte
  4. Transgenic Animal/Embryonic Stem Cell Resource
    • Expertise related to transgenics.
    • Services Offered by the UAB Transgenic Mouse Facility
      • DNA microinjection (pronuclear)
      • Gene Targeting of ES cells (with & without screening)
      • ES cell microinjection (blastocysts)
      • In vitro fertilization (IVF)
      • Embryo cryopreservation
      • Sperm cryopreservation
      • Long-term storage of cryopreserved transgenic lines
      • Assisted reproduction / rederivations
      • Consultation & training
  5. Service Price
    DXA $8.26
    QMR $7.68
    uCT (per hr) $78.63
    Indirect Calorimetry (per mouse per day) $6.44
    Wheel running (per mouse per day) $3.62
    Bomb calorimetry $25.72
    Carcass analysis (mice) $34.30

    Contact Information:
    Maria S. Johnson, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor
    Phone: (205) 934-4008
    Email: mariajoh@uab.edu


Director: Kirk M. Habegger, Ph.D.

Director: Kirk M. Habegger, Ph.D.

BDB 783
1720 2nd Ave South
Birmingham, AL 35294-0012
Office: (205) 934-9835
Email: kirkhabegger@uabmc.edu

Co- Director (TGEM): John M. Parant, PhD

Co- Director (TGEM): John M. Parant, PhD

Volker Hall 252
1670 University Blvd
Birmingham, AL 35233
Office: (205) 975-8469
Email: jparant@uab.edu

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