Research Units & Resources

The Platform for Innovation, Discovery and Cures

A large number of basic and clinical research units come together to create the research arm of the Diabetes Center.  By sharing in the belief of the power of collaboration, our research teams are working together to create new pathways to success.

lab techAn important basic research unit in the Diabetes Center is our shared research resources called Core Facilities.  These eight centralized areas of technology and expertise provide a wide variety of services to support our research efforts.   Our core laboratories provide access to highly sophisticated equipment, microscopes, software, reagents, technical assistance and training, along with access to high quality human and mouse islets, new mutant mouse models and other resources critical to diabetes research activities.

Two of our basic research units that have had a long, successful history at UCSF are the Metabolic Research Unit and the Hormone Research Institute.  The Metabolic Research Unit (MRU) was established in 1949 by the California State Legislature as an institute for clinical research and training in metabolic and endocrine diseases.   The Hormone Research Institute (HRI) was organized in 1950 on the Berkeley Campus and moved to UCSF in 1960.  Its greatest successes include the isolation of the human growth hormone, the cloning of the gene that produces human insulin, and the cloning of the Hepatitis B surface antigen that led to the development of the hepatitis B vaccine. 

Other research units closely associated with the Diabetes Center are more focused on translational and clinical research including the Immune Tolerance Network (ITN), the JDRF Collaborative Center for Cell Therapy (CCCT), and our UCSF Islet Transplantation Program.

And, we can’t forget our UCSF Labs that are focused on transforming research into treatments for those living with diabetes.

Lastly, in the area of public health translational research, the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations at San Francisco General Hospital is carrying out innovative research to prevent and treat chronic diseases such as diabetes.