AKC Seminar: Day-night rhythm of skeletal muscle lipid and mitochondrial metabolism and its role in insulin resistance in humans

August Krogh Seminar

Professor Patrick Schrauwen

NUTRIM school for Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University, Netherlands.

Research Profile

Patrick Schrauwen has made key contributions to the study of the relation between mitochondrial function and ectopic fat storage in muscle and type 2 diabetes/insulin resistance. Schrauwen was one of the first to show that mitochondrial function, as measured by muscle oxidative capacity in vivo using NMR imaging and spectroscopy, is compromised not only in patients with overt type 2 diabetes but also in pre-diabetes. This finding was substantiated by high-resolution respirometry in permeabilized human muscle fibers, which revealed intrinsic defects in mitochondrial function as part of the muscle pathology commonly observed in type 2 diabetes. Subsequently, Dr. Schrauwen investigated if mitochondrial function could be considered a target for the prevention or treatment of diabetes. He used state-of-the-art methodologies to demonstrate the beneficial effect of exercise training on insulin sensitivity and mitochondrial function, including underlying mechanisms. Dr. Schrauwen was also the first to show that the polyphenolic compound resveratrol is able to increase mitochondrial function and improve metabolic health in obese humans (most cited paper in Cell Metabolism of the last five years).


Type 2 diabetes patients are characterized by a reduced ex vivo and in vivo mitochondrial function in skeletal muscle when compared to BMI- and age-matched control subjects. Why mitochondrial function is low in type 2 diabetes is yet unrevealed. Recent insights show that mitochondrial function displays 24h rhythmicity in skeletal muscle, and is under control of the molecular biological clock. Circadian misalignment, such as shift work, affects the muscle molecular clock and results in the rapid induction of skeletal muscle insulin resistance. In this presentation, recent insights in the role of circadian rhythms in the development of skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity will be discussed.


Demonstration of a day-night rhythm in human skeletal muscle oxidative capacity.

Circadian misalignment induces fatty acid metabolism gene profiles and compromises insulin sensitivity in human skeletal muscle.


5 March 2020

14:00-15:00: Seminar and discussion
15:00-16:00: Post seminar servings and socializing


Auditorium 1, Universitetsparken 13, 2100 Copenhagen Ø


Participation is free, but please register here.

For PhD students

PhD students participating in August Krogh seminars receive 0,2 ECTS per seminar


Jens Frey Halling, jefh@nexs.ku.dk

Jonas Møller Kristensen, jmkristensen@nexs.ku.dk 

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