Subhadra Gunawardana, DVM, PhD

Associate Professor of Cell Biology and Physiology

Research Interests

Novel techniques for correcting type-1 diabetes without insulin, utilizing the beneficial effects of healthy adipose tissue: Subcutaneous transplantation of embryonic brown adipose tissue (BAT) has proven effective in reversing type 1 diabetes in mice, independent of insulin. Return to normoglycemia correlates with replenishment of healthy white adipose tissue, increased levels of beneficial adipokines and overall decrease of inflammation, while insulin remains consistently low. A physiological equilibrium of adipose tissue-derived factors appears to compensate for insulin. Ongoing work seeks to document the underlying mechanisms, and to customize this approach for human patients through establishing suitable alternatives for embryonic BAT.

Professional Education
  • DVM: University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka
  • MS: Iowa State University, Ames, IA
  • PhD: Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
Laboratory Affiliation