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Research Faculty > Maria Alexander-Bridges, MD, PhD

Maria Alexander-Bridges, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
MGH Diabetes Unit
65 Landsdowne Street
Cambridge, MA 02139



Dr. Alexander-Bridges is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and member of the Diabetes Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital. She received her MD and PhD degrees from Harvard Medical School, and the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology program. Dr. Alexander-Bridges served as an intern and resident at the Johns Hopkins University and pursued subspecialty training in endocrinology at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Alexander-Bridges was a postdoctoral fellow with Howard Goodman, Ph.D. where she investigated the mechanism of insulin action on gene expression, for which she received the Eli Lilly Award.

Dr. Alexander-Bridges has served in national leadership positions; organizing and participating in scientific session at the American Diabetes Association, the Endocrine Society, and Juvenile Diabetes Foundation International. She has served on peer review panels for the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Aging and Juvenile Diabetes Foundation International.

Dr. Alexander-Bridges first developed an interest in hormonal regulation of cellular metabolism as a graduate student and is now internationally recognized for her work on the mechanism of gene transcription regulation by insulin and carbohydrates. She was among the first to identify the ability of insulin to promote transcription of a gene that regulates metabolic processes in the liver and adipose tissue. In unraveling this system, Dr. Alexander- Bridges cloned a protein that binds the insulin responsive element in the GAPDH gene.

Her current work is focused on the role of the DAF-16 family or forkhead transcription factors in mediating the saction of glucocorticoids and insulin on gene transcription. DAF-16 and its mammalian homologues mediate the negative effect of insulin on the transcription of genes that regulate diverse pathways from gluconeogenesis to cell growth and apoptosis. These studies will provide new insights into the mechanism of insulin action on gene transcription and in so doing will elucidate pathways important to obesity, diabetes cancer, and longevity.

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