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Carol Renfrew Haft, Ph.D.

Photo of Carol Renfew-Haft
Adipocyte development and biology in various fat depots; protein trafficking, secretion, processing and ER stress in metabolic disease

Responsibilities & Activities

As a senior advisor for cell biology and program director for adipocyte tissue biology, I manage a portfolio of grants focused on the life cycle of adipocytes, preadipocytes, and progenitor cells as well as immune, and stromal vascular cells important in fat tissue biology. The program includes studies of the development, maintenance, plasticity and turnover of different types of adipocytes (white, brown, beige and marrow fat cells) including studies focused on the role of ER stress, autophagy, and epigenetic regulation; lipid droplet biogenesis, signaling and turnover in response to food and changes in glycemia; regulation of fatty acid turnover and storage; adipokine generation and secretion; the role of immune cells, endothelial cells, extracellular matrix components and cells of the stroma in determining the metabolic properties of different fat depot and their common and unique responses to excess nutrients and signals from other tissues; and the regulation of thermogenesis. Studies in model organisms, rodents, human cells, human subjects as well as bioengineered materials are welcomed.

I coordinate the Division’s NIDDK Advisory Council activities and work with other units in the NIDDK to coordinate the Division’s expenditure of funds. I participate in several NIDDK working groups, including those focused on obesity, translation, council operations, and training and career development.

Research Programs

Endocrinology & Hormone Signaling
Hormone and nutrient sensing by the central nervous system, and coordination of energy homeostasis with the stress and reproductive axes in the brain.

Genetic Metabolic Disease
Basic and clinical studies on the pathophysiology and treatment of inborn errors of metabolism and rare genetic metabolic diseases.

Metabolic Pathways
Whole body intermediary carbohydrate, lipid and protein metabolism and flux measurement in insulin resistance, obesity and diabetes.

Metabolism, Energy Balance & Obesity
Energy balance, thermogenesis and mitochondria biology in obesity and diabetes

Last Reviewed March 2023