Characterisation of the intracellular and ligand-dependent mechanisms through which excess fatty acids induce toxicity in skeletal muscle.
Examination of the interrelationships between skeletal muscle fatty acid metabolism and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake.
Investigation of the cellular mechanisms that regulate fat breakdown in health and disease. (Obesity)
Finding news ways to get healthy
Professor Matthew Watt leads an innovative research program that seeks to identify how defects of lipid metabolism and inter-tissue communication cause obesity-related disorders, and to use this information to discover novel targets that can be transitioned to clinical therapeutics. His team’s research strategy encompasses two major streams:
1. Target identification- where protein expression is modulated in cultured cells and combined with discovery-based transcriptomic, proteomic and lipidomic approaches with targeted functional cell biology to unravel the regulation of biological functions (metabolism, endocrine function, energy metabolism).
2. In vivo validation- involves the utilisation of mouse metabolic phenotyping and biochemical assessment of unique transgenic murine models to understand integrative biology systems. This is followed by pre-clinical studies in human tissues to demonstrate potential therapeutic efficacy.
Professor Watt has authored >120 peer-reviewed manuscripts and contributes to the discipline through his roles as National Secretary of the Australian Physiological Society and as a reviewing editor of the American Journal of Physiology (Endocrinology & Metabolism).