Michigan Animal Studies Core


The Animal Studies Core (ASC) aims to provide expertise and services to basic biomedical researchers using rodent models to study processes relevant to diabetes, its complications, and related endocrine and metabolic disorders. To accomplish this, the ASC includes 4 laboratories and within each laboratory the goal is to:

  1. Provide expert consultation and training to MDRC investigators regarding phenotyping strategies and experimental design to characterize rodent models of diabetes and related metabolic diseases.
  2. Provide MDRC investigators with the capability for sophisticated, standardized metabolic phenotyping of rodent models relevant to diabetes, obesity and associated metabolic diseases.
  3. Provide expert aid in the analysis and interpretation of data arising from services offered in the ASC.
  4. Develop and acquire new technologies for rodent, whole animal metabolic phenotyping in response to the needs of MDRC investigators.


The ASC is an established fee-for-service laboratory that provides consultation and utilizes specialized skills and equipment to assess the metabolic state and related endocrine and behavioral phenotypes of rats and mice. The four laboratories include:

  1. Rat Metabolic Phenotyping Lab: The MDRC supports rat metabolic and behavioral phenotyping (including assessments of glucose homeostasis, whole animal metabolic parameters, body composition, and related measures in rodents) via the Metabolism, Bariatric Surgery, and Behavior Core. MDRC members can request services for rats through this core. MDRC members can also request services for mouse metabolic phenotyping through the MMPC which shares facilities with the Metabolism, Bariatric Surgery, and Behavior Core
  2. Neuronal Control of Metabolism Laboratory: provides training and access to equipment for the optogenetic (a technology that utilizes a combination of genetics and focal light exposure to acutely manipulate neuronal activity in awake rodents; mice or rats) manipulation of neurons to permit the examination of physiologic and behavioral responses to neural circuit manipulation. Also provides training and access to equipment for in vivo fiber photometry, to examine the activity of populations of neurons in awake behaving animals by the use of genetic tools, and to training and equipment for ex vivo Ca+2 imaging in fresh brain tissue, to directly examine the activity of genetically-defined populations of neurons in ex vivo slice culture.
  3. Islet Laboratory: serves to isolate islets from mice or rats for MDRC researchers; the Islet Lab will also perform perifusion and other analyses of islet function.
  4. Continuous Glucose Monitoring Lab: provides the in vivo and continuous assessment of glucose levels by radiotelemetry in conscious, unrestrained mice or rats. This technology minimizes handling stress and permits a detailed analysis of glucose fluctuations within normal feeding patterns and across extended time-frames.

All facilities are equipped with specialized equipment, such as CLAMS, glucose clamping apparatus, and the equipment reagents and personnel required to provide the analyses to investigators.


Animals to be phenotyped are transferred to the care of the Animal Studies Core under University of Michigan’s Committee on Use and Care of Animals protocols. Core personnel conduct all analyses in the Animal Studies Core.

Visit the Animal Studies Core web sitefor a list of available services and recharge rates.

Core People

Core Director
Martin G Myers Martin G Myers Jr MD PhD Michigan Animal Studies Core Email