University of Colorado Denver

The University of Colorado Denver (UC Denver) is world renowned for basic, translational, and clinical diabetes research and treatment of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes (T1D and T2D), and their related complications. The University of Colorado Diabetes Research Center (UC Denver DRC) will strengthen diabetes research in Colorado by providing:

  • state-of-the-art research technologies and specialized resources to maximize effective and innovative research;
  • access to patient samples and data;
  • enrichment programs, education and seminar series to the diabetes community; and
  • by attracting new scientists into the diabetes field through the Pilot and Feasibility program.

These objectives will be realized by providing improved infrastructure and access to specialized reagents and resources, and an environment that promotes scientific interactions, research discoveries, and progress towards diabetes treatment and cures.

The UC Denver DRC will be primarily located on the rapidly growing Anschutz Medical Campus (AMC) in Aurora, Colorado where the majority of the UC Denver clinical and research departments are located. This unique multi-hospital and academic campus configuration allows for a broad diabetes research base, which currently includes 88 basic, translational, and clinical scientific investigators across 17 departments and divisions at UC AMC who currently bring diabetes/diabetes-related direct cost grant support totaling > $65 million in individual grants and >$14 million in center and training grants. Drs. Lori Sussel, PhD. and Jane Reusch, MD bring together complementary areas of scientific backgrounds and expertise to oversee the organization and scientific focus of the UC Denver DRC.

We will implement four Biomedical Research Cores to provide cutting-edge technologies in Clinical Resources (fully integrated databases for tracking of study participants, bio-samples and data), Tissue Procurement and Processing (rodent tissue and islet isolation, human islet and tissue procurement, histology services, cell culture bank), Diabetes Modeling (human stem cell-derived in vitro cell and organoid models, gene editing), and Cell and Tissue Analysis (advanced microscopy, flow cytometry, specialized CyTOF and MIBI reagents for the diabetes community).

The UC Denver DRC will also establish a Pilot and Feasibility Program to recruit young faculty into diabetes and diabetes-related research, and encourage established investigators from other fields to enter the diabetes field.

Research Cores


Clinical & Translational Studies
Colorado Clinical Resource Core Marian Rewers MD PhD
The Clinical Resource Core (CR) of the UC Denver DRC stands at the interface of multiple institutions, programs and individuals, all of whom are working to prevent or ameliorate the devastating long term complications of diabetes and its high economic burden.
Clinical & Translational Studies
Colorado Disease Modeling Core Holger Russ PhD
The overall mission of the Disease Modeling Core (DM core) is to provide diabetes researchers with access to novel human stem cell-derived in vitro cell models for investigating cellular and molecular features of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
Histology, Morphology & Imaging
Colorado Cell and Tissue Analysis Core Richard Benninger PhD
The overall objective of the Cell and Tissue Analysis Core is to provide diabetes researchers at the University of Colorado with a unified means to access and effectively use state-of-the art microscopy and mass cytometry systems to drive innovative research.
Histology, Morphology & Imaging
Colorado Tissue Procurement and Processing Core Maki Nakayama MD
The overall mission of the Tissue Procurement and Processing (TPP) Core is to facilitate access and usage of tissues and services to meet the specialized needs of the diabetes research community to expedite and catalyze innovative diabetes research at UC AMC.