The Cellular and Molecular Biology Core (CMBC) is specifically tailored to meet the needs of Nutrition Obesity Research Center (NORC) investigators in basic and clinical departments who wish to conduct nutrition- or obesity- related molecular research. The CMBC provides support for the study of adipose tissue biology and of the molecular basis of nutritional effects on metabolism in health and disease. Such studies often require specific methods, equipment and expertise that are difficult to assemble by individual investigators and present a barrier to those who are new to this field. Therefore, the overall objective of the CMBC is to provide NORC researchers with access to the training, expertise, and facilities needed for comprehensive study of adipose tissue and of molecular aspects of nutritional research.

Core Description

The purpose of the NORC Cellular and Molecular Biology Core (CMBC) is to provide:

  1. access to highly specialized facilities and equipment (e.g., a tissue culture facility, electroporation transfection system, two Oroboros Oxygraph 2K high resolution respirometers for assessing the in vitro metabolic state of isolated tissues, cells or isolated mitochondria,  real-time PCR machines, Luminex 200 for multiplexed immunoassays, Nanosight NS300 for extracellular vesicle (EV) characterization and Li-Cor Odyssey for protein detection) and technical expertise for their operation;
  2. assistance with specialized assays to evaluate: (i) adipocyte metabolic activity (e.g., glucose transport, glucose incorporation into glycogen, fatty acid transport, fatty acid incorporation into major lipid fractions, fatty acid oxidation, adipocyte lipolysis), (ii) adipose tissue morphology, (iii) adipose tissue macrophage content, and (iv) adipocyte gene and protein expression. In addition, the ABMN Core provides training for investigators (with special focus on young investigators), their staff, and research fellows in these areas of research, both in the form of one-on-one hands-on instruction.


Service available to All entities, including for-profit organizations.

Priority service for No distinctions.

Additional information:

Services available to members of the Nutrition Obesity Research Center (NORC).  Applications to the NORC can be found at


  • Assessment of adipose tissue morphology and macrophage content: 1) Processing adipose tissue samples 2)Adipocyte number and cell size 3)Adipose tissue macrophage content
  • Assessment of adipocyte gene expression and adipokine secretion: 1)RT-PCR analysis of gene expression 2)Measurement of adipokine concentration
  • Access to culture of adipose tissue, primary adipocytes and preadipocyte cell lines
  • Training in primary adipocyte isolation and adipose organ culture
  • Training in specialized nutrition-related assays
  • Training in mitochondrial function assays such as respiration using isolated tissues, cells or mitochondria


  • Two ABI 7500 Fast real-time PCR machines
  • Beckman Coulter Counter Multisizer III for adipocyte sizing
  • Bio-Tek Synergy II multi-mode plate reader
  • Nanodrop ND-1000 spectrophotometer
  • Li-Cor Odyssey Near IR detection system
  • Beckman scintillation counter
  • Tissue culture facility with two laminar flow hoods
  • Two CO2 incubators
  • Lonza Nuclofector II transfection system
  • Nikon TS100 fluorescent microscope
  • Centrifuge
  • Refrigerators
  • Cell freezer
  • Two Oxygraph-2k high resolution respirometer for assessing the metabolic state of biopsy samples, cells or isolated mitochondria
  • Tissue Lyser II for tissue homogenization for RNA or protein
  • Luminex 200
  • Nanosight NS300


Please contact this core directly for pricing information.

Nutrition Obesity Research Center (NORC)