FiDiPro professor Manuel Tena-Sempere was awarded a 3-year grant of 3 million DKK from the Novo Nordisk foundation

FiDiPro professor Manuel Tena-Sempere, University of Turku, Faculty of Medicine / Institute of Biomedicine, was awarded a prestigious 3-year grant of 3 million DKK from the Novo Nordisk foundation, committee on endocrinology and metabolism, which supports biomedical research in all Nordic countries.


The project run by Prof. Tena-Sempere and Adj. Prof. Suvi Ruohonen will apply functional genomics to dissect out the role of kisspeptins in the control of body energy and glucose homeostasis. As the prevalence of obesity and metabolic diseases is escalating worldwide, this urges for a better under-standing of the pathogenic basis of metabolic disorders, some of which are linked to reproductive alterations. Kisspeptins, the products of Kiss1 gene, are key elements in the control of reproduction; a function conducted mainly by populations of hypothalamic Kiss1 neurons, the most prominent being located in the arcuate nucleus (ARC). Kiss1 neurons in the ARC are sensitive to body energy status and may function as transducers for the regulatory actions of metabolic signals on puberty and fertility. Novel mouse lines, recently generated by TCDM, that enable conditional ablation of Kiss1 in the ARC, the liver or adipose, will be used, and studies will also include pharmacological administration of kisspeptin, and Kiss1 expression analyses in clinical liver and adipose samples. The data will help to define the contribution of kisspeptins to metabolic alterations linked to prevalent conditions, as obesity, and may set the basis of novel therapies for metabolic and reproductive diseases.