The Streets lab will explore how obesity leads to unhealthy changes in the cellular, molecular, and structural composition of adipose tissue. Adipose tissue does more than store fat: it is an organized collection of different cell types that cooperate to regulate the body’s overall metabolism. Understanding how these cells interact requires analyzing the genes they express and the molecules they make. Unfortunately, most of the methods that had been used previously to study this disrupt the tissue and destroy information about its cellular architecture. Now, using newly developed techniques in bioengineering, microscopy, molecular biology, and computational genomics, our group will identify and characterize the cells that constitute adipose tissue, mapping their position and cataloging the genes that are active in each individual cell. We will then determine how this cellular and metabolic profile is altered in adipose tissue taken from mice fed a high-fat diet. This work could uncover new cell types involved in metabolic regulation and could lead to novel treatments for limiting the pathological changes that lead to insulin resistance and diabetes.