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Metabolic Core Personnel


Jacob (Jed) E. Friedman, Ph.D.

Professor and Director of the Metabolic Core Service Center

Dr. Friedman has been conducting clinical and basic investigation in human and animal models of obesity/diabetes since 1990. He has extensive experience in metabolism, biochemistry, and the molecular biology of insulin resistance. He is an internationally recognized expert in the field of mechanisms for insulin resistance in human pregnancy and gestational diabetes, has served on >20 NIH study sections, and has published several seminal articles on the subject of insulin resistance, obesity, and their co-morbidities. He is responsible for overseeing all of the biochemistry and molecular endpoints in samples delivered to the Metabolic Core.  Dr. Friedman meets regularly with the Metabolic Core personnel to review and assess the progress of the proposed research and is responsible for preparation of all interim progress reports.  Dr. Friedman has a well-established laboratory with resources and equipment to carry out all aspects of the Metabolic Core Service Center, including core facilities for mouse indirect calorimetry/body composition, real-time quantitative PCR, insulin clamping experiments, hormone analysis, and cell-based assays for Western blotting. Dr. Friedman is responsible for overall quality control including reviewing and analysis of data, and interpretation of the data with junior faculty seeking his help. 


Becky de la Houssaye, M.S.

Senior Professional Research Assistant

Ms. de la Houssaye works in Dr. Friedman’s lab and has extensive experience characterizing insulin signaling and PI 3-kinase activity in human tissues.  Becky has > 20 years of experience in metabolic biochemistry and lipid metabolism in animal models and tissue culture.  In addition, she has > 6 years of experience analyzing cell metabolism in human and rodent adipose tissue in addition to performing Western blots to examine protein expression of insulin signaling intermediates.  She plays a key role in performing all of the ELIZA-based assays for hormones, analytes, and cytokines for the NORC, and performing metabolite assays in tissues from various species.


Rachel Janssen, M.S.

Senior Professional Research Assistant and manager of the Core

Ms. Janssen has been working with Dr. Friedman for over seven years and has > 20 years experience in molecular biology in both academic and biotech settings. She performs real-time quantitative PCR, molecular cloning, and virus production. Rachel is responsible for RNA isolation, RNA analysis, quality control and primer design, and for all real-time quantitative PCR analyses.  She also manages Dr. Friedman’s lab and the Metabolic Core Service Center.