The Kanter Laboratory

Welcome to the Kanter Laboratory

What are the molecular mechanisms that result in complications of diabetes?


Diabetes is increasing as a result of increased rates of obesity, and with that, complications of diabetes are also on the rise. These include diabetic kidney disease and macrovascular complications such as cardiovascular disease due to underlying atherosclerosis. In the laboratory, we focus on these two main complications of diabetes and how they potentially interact. We are especially interested in myeloid cells (monocytes and macrophages), and how they get activated under diabetic conditions, and their role in the acceleration of diabetes-associated complications, such as kidney disease and atherosclerosis. The laboratory has recently generated a model to study the combination of diabetic kidney disease and atherosclerosis. This will allow us to ask what molecular mechanisms drive the individual complications and the interaction between them. One of these mechanisms appears to be augmented inflammatory signals, perhaps caused by diabetic dyslipidemia. The current focus of the laboratory is to understand how dyslipidemia accelerates diabetic complications.

Jenny Kanter, PhD
Jenny Kanter, PhD

I earned my PhD in 2010 from the University of Washington. My PhD work was focused on myeloid cell inflammation in diabetes and how this inflammation affected atherogenesis (PNAS. 2012;109(12):E715-24. PMID:22308341). Following my PhD I did a 2-year postdoc with Novo Nordisk A/S, as part of their STAR program. The project involved an insulin receptor agonist with blood glucose-lowering effects with distinct signaling properties compared to insulin. This peptide dramatically reduced atherosclerosis in a model of type 2 diabetes (Diabetes. 2018; 67(5):946-959. PMID: 29483182). Following my postdoc with Novo Nordisk, I transitioned into a faculty position at the University of Washington, at the division of Metabolism, Endocrinology, and Nutrition in 2014. My independent work has continued to focus on complications of diabetes such as renal and cardiovascular complications (Am J Pathol. 2018:188(2):343-352. PMID:29154962) and how dyslipidemia associated with diabetes might accelerate these complications (J Clin Invest. 2019;129(10):4165-4179. PMID: 31295146).

Farah Kramer, BS
Farah Kramer, BS

Farah is a research scientist who works in both the Kanter and the Bornfeldt laboratory. Her interests include developing and maintaining mouse models of diabetes-accelerated atherosclerosis and kidney disease (Bornfeldt et al. Am J Pathol. 2018).

Luz Wigzell, BS
Luz Wigzell, BS

Luz is a research scientist that works in both the Kanter and the Bornfeldt laboratory. Her primary focus is on histology.

Contact Us

UW Medicine Diabetes Institute
750 Republican Street, Box 358062
Seattle, WA 98109

Jenny Kanter: (206) 616-6095
Fax: (206) 543-3567

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