Pennington Biomedical Research Center is pleased to announce that John P. Kirwan, Ph.D., is now the new principal investigator of the Louisiana Clinical and Translational Science (LA CaTS) Center. This statewide initiative of Pennington Biomedical is supported in part by U54 GM104940 from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health, which funds the LA CaTS Center.

Prior to becoming Executive Director of Pennington Biomedical Research Center in January, Dr. Kirwan was director of the Metabolic Translational Research Center and professor of molecular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. In addition, Dr. Kirwan was also a professor of physiology and of nutrition at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland. His professional expertise includes nearly three decades of research, teaching and service in the obesity and diabetes fields.

Dr. Kirwan received his clinical physiology training at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Mo.; his Ph.D. in human bioenergetics from Ball State University, Muncie, Ind.; his master's degree in exercise biochemistry from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Mass.; and his bachelor's degree (Hons) from the University of Limerick, Ireland.

He leads an internationally acclaimed biomedical research program focused on diabetes, obesity, nutrition and exercise. Even before he became principal investigator of the LA Cats Center, he was also PI or Co-Investigator on nine NIH grant. To date Dr. Kirwan has generated more than $35 million in research funding, most which has come from the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and the food, pharmaceutical, and medical device industries. He has published more than 200 scientific papers related to diabetes and metabolism in prestigious peer-reviewed journals including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Diabetes and Diabetes Care. Among his most important research contributions is the discovery that for a significant number of patients, diabetes can be put into long-term remission by surgically altering the physiology of the intestine and stomach.