Profile & Department: Associate Professor,Molecular, Cellular and Integrative Physiology, York University
The Scimè lab is focused on understanding the molecular, cellular and physiological aspects for how metabolism is involved in stem cell fate choices particularly in muscle and adipose tissue. Stem and progenitor cell fates have a profound impact on health and disease progression. Adipose and muscle tissue are inextricably linked to many metabolic pathways, and their dysregulation are associated with many complications and disease. No more so than in the ever-increasing prevalence of disorders such as type II diabetes, obesity, cancer and sarcopenia. A key component of muscle and adipose tissue function is provided by their stem cells that are necessary for tissue development, maintenance and disposition. For example, an important aspect in adipose and skeletal muscle stem cell function is their commitment to tissue subtypes, which play a crucial role in energy hemostasis. At the cellular level stem cell fate choices of quiescence, activation, differentiation and self-renewal are bio energetically balanced through proper regulation of metabolic pathways. At a whole body level stem cell fate decisions, are guided by their micro environment, which in turn is influenced by external physiological perturbations such as exercise, diet and disease. Ongoing studies are 1) to determine the role of cellular metabolism on stem cell fate choices in various tissue types 2) to assess the role of whole body stressors, such as exercise and diet on stem cell behavior and 3) to find the impact of altered metabolism on cancer stem function and micro environment.