We are identifying biomarkers for imaging the development of diabetes and heart failure. We are characterizing peptide-based agents for PET and fluorescence imaging by screening them for receptor binding and testing them in vivo for pharmacokinetic profiling. We then use lead compounds in imaging changes in receptor expression during the development of diabetes and heart failure in preclinical models. We hope that this new generation of imaging agents will be eventually used in the clinic. Additionally, we are collaborating with other investigators to image nutrient transporter expression and epigenetic changes during normal pancreatic development and during the development of diabetes.
Dr. Savita Dhanvantari received a B.Sc. in Zoology from the University of Guelph, an M.Sc. in Zoology from Western University, and a Ph.D. in Physiology from the University of Toronto. She carried out her post-doctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD under the supervision of Dr. Y. Peng Loh.
In 2002, she joined the Lawson Health Research Institute where she is a scientist in both the Metabolism and Diabetes Program and the Imaging Program. She is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Western Ontario, and cross-appointed to the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.