TCDM offers multidisciplinary know-how and research services in investigating the role of dietary composition and feeding behavior in established and novel animal disease models. The Unit has a long-standing expertise especially in obesity and hormonal cancers. Nutrition and Metabolism Unit works in close collaboration with Functional Foods Forum, University of Turku ( 

Design of dietary interventions

  • experimental diet formulation
  • diet-induced disease models
  • drug – diet interaction
  • nutraceutical research

Metabolic phenotyping

  • food intake and feeding behavior
  • energy expenditure by indirect calorimetry (Oxylet Pro Physiocage, Panlab, Harvard Biosciences, Inc)
  • physical activity by photobeam frame system (Photobeam Activity System PAS, Cage Rack, San Diego Instruments) or low-profile wireless running wheels (Med Associates, Inc)
  • body weight
  • body composition by quantitative NMR (EchoMRI-700, Echo Medical Systems)
  • white and brown adipose tissue morphology and function
  • body temperature by FLIR T620 Infrared Camera
  • glucose and lipid metabolism
  • hepatosteatosis
  • obesity biomarkers

Dietary modulation of hormone action and tumorigenesis

  • experimental cancer models
  • in vivo reporter models for hormone action and GM models with
  • altered sex steroid balance
  • rodent models for metabolism and kinetics of dietary polyphenols

Eriika Savontaus, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pharmacology and Therapeutics

Email: eriika.savontaus(at)

Nutrition and Metabolism
Translational preclinical models for nutrition research