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Bryan Bergman, Ph.D.

Professor of Medicine

Dr. Bergman is a Professor in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. He was trained as an integrative physiologist at the University of California Berkeley, where he received his PhD in exercise physiology with an emphasis in exercise biochemistry. His doctoral work investigated how endurance exercise training changes glucose, fat, and lactate metabolism during exercise. He went to the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center for a post-doctoral fellowship in Jim Hill's laboratory, where he investigated the interaction of exercise, obesity, and insulin action. During his post-doctoral studies, he became interested in the link between metabolic alterations and insulin resistance in humans. After receiving an NIH K award, Dr. Bergman moved to Dr. Robert Eckel’s laboratory at UC Denver where he studied the relationship between intramuscular lipids and insulin sensitivity.

Dr. Bergman’s research investigates the relationship between intramuscular lipids and insulin sensitivity. His laboratory is focused on elucidating the “athletes paradox” which describes how athletes have a high amount of intramuscular lipid but are insulin sensitive – which is opposite that found in individuals with type 2 diabetes. By studying these two populations with similar intramuscular triglyceride content, but dichotomous sensitivity to insulin, Dr. Bergman hopes to uncover how intramuscular lipid is related to insulin sensitivity. Dr. Bergman is currently funded by an NIH R01 and R03. In two separate studies, his laboratory found that saturated diacylglycerol was positively related to insulin resistance. As a result, his laboratory is investigating if saturated diacylglycerol in skeletal muscle plays a role in promoting the insulin resistant state in humans. Specifically, they are measuring the intracellular location, and molecular species of diacylglycerol, which describes the fatty acid on the first and second carbon of the glycerol backbone. Their laboratory is finding that both the intracellular location, and the molecular species of diacylglycerol are individually related to insulin resistance. Dr. Bergman’s laboratory is also pursuing mechanistic relationships between intramuscular lipids and insulin sensitivity using primary muscle cell culture. This model is unique the phenotype of the primary muscle cells matches the phenotype of the donor. They are pursuing cell culture studies to determine potential mechanisms underlying the relationship between saturated muscle lipids and insulin sensitivity. The overall goal of Dr. Bergman’s research is to uncover how ectopic lipid storage is related to insulin resistance - to uncover novel therapeutic targets to help prevent and treat pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes.


  • Metabolism

Selected Publications

  1. Features of hepatic and skeletal muscle insulin resistance unique to type 1 diabetes in humans.
    Bergman BC, Howard D, Schauer IE, Maahs DM, Snell-Bergeon JK, Eckel RH, Perreault L, Rewers M.
    Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2012 Feb 22.
  2. Adiponectin dysregulation and insulin resistance in type 1 diabetes.
    Pereira RI, Snell-Bergeon JK, Erickson C, Schauer IE, Bergman BC, Rewers M, Maahs DM.
    J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Apr;97(4):E642-7. Epub 2012 Jan 25.
  3. Localisation and composition of skeletal muscle diacylglycerol predicts insulin resistance in humans.
    Bergman BC, Hunerdosse DM, Kerege A, Playdon MC, Perreault L.
    Diabetologia. 2012 Apr;55(4):1140-50. Epub 2012 Jan 15.
  4. Fenofibrate administration does not affect muscle triglyceride concentration or insulin sensitivity in humans.
    Perreault L, Bergman BC, Hunerdosse DM, Howard DJ, Eckel RH.
    Metabolism. 2011 Aug;60(8):1107-14. Epub 2011 Feb 8.
  5. Glycaemic variability is associated with coronary artery calcium in men with Type 1 diabetes: the Coronary Artery Calcification in Type 1 Diabetes study.
    Snell-Bergeon JK, Roman R, Rodbard D, Garg S, Maahs DM, Schauer IE, Bergman BC, Kinney GL, Rewers M.
    Diabet Med. 2010 Dec;27(12):1436-42. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-5491.2010.03127.x.
  6. Insulin resistance, defective insulin-mediated fatty acid suppression, and coronary artery calcification in subjects with and without type 1 diabetes: The CACTI study.
    Schauer IE, Snell-Bergeon JK, Bergman BC, Maahs DM, Kretowski A, Eckel RH, Rewers M.
    Diabetes. 2011 Jan;60(1):306-14. Epub 2010 Oct 26.
  7. Incretin action maintains insulin secretion, but not hepatic insulin action, in people with impaired fasting glucose.
    Perreault L, Man CD, Hunerdosse DM, Cobelli C, Bergman BC.
    Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2010 Oct;90(1):87-94. Epub 2010 Aug 13.
  8. Lipoprotein subfraction cholesterol distribution is proatherogenic in women with type 1 diabetes and insulin resistance.
    Maahs DM, Hokanson JE, Wang H, Kinney GL, Snell-Bergeon JK, East A, Bergman BC, Schauer IE, Rewers M, Eckel RH.
    Diabetes. 2010 Jul;59(7):1771-9. Epub 2010 Apr 14.
  9. Altered intramuscular lipid metabolism relates to diminished insulin action in men, but not women, in progression to diabetes.
    Perreault L, Bergman BC, Hunerdosse DM, Eckel RH.
    Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 Nov;18(11):2093-100. Epub 2010 Apr 8.
  10. Increased intramuscular lipid synthesis and low saturation relate to insulin sensitivity in endurance-trained athletes.
    Bergman BC, Perreault L, Hunerdosse DM, Koehler MC, Samek AM, Eckel RH.
    J Appl Physiol. 2010 May;108(5):1134-41. Epub 2010 Mar 18.
  11. Inflexibility in intramuscular triglyceride fractional synthesis distinguishes prediabetes from obesity in humans.
    Perreault L, Bergman BC, Hunerdosse DM, Playdon MC, Eckel RH.
    Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 Aug;18(8):1524-31. Epub 2009 Dec 24.
  12. Intramuscular lipid metabolism in the insulin resistance of smoking.
    Bergman BC, Perreault L, Hunerdosse DM, Koehler MC, Samek AM, Eckel RH.
    Diabetes. 2009 Oct;58(10):2220-7. Epub 2009 Jul 6.


Graduate Schools
Ph.D. , University of California at Berkeley (1999)
M.S., University of California at Berkeley (1996)

Undergraduate Schools
B.S., University of Wyoming (1993)

Postdoctoral Fellowship
Post-Doc, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (1999-2003)




Samantha Bacon ​Professional Research Assistant
​Anna Kerege ​Professional Research Assistant