B.Sc. (Zoology) University of Calgary, 1968,
M.Sc. (Biology) University of Calgary, 1971,
Ph.D. (Biochemistry) University of California, San Francisco, 1977
Dr. Bell's research focuses on the genetics of diabetes mellitus and other metabolic disorders and the developmental biology of the insulin-secreting pancreatic beta cell. The goals of his research program are: 1) to identify the genes that contribute to the development of diabetes and to determine the molecular and physiological mechanisms by which they control blood glucose levels; and 2) to develop new approaches for treating diabetes. He and his colleagues are using various genetic approaches to map and identify the genes that cause diabetes. They carry out studies in both humans and mouse models to determine the mechanisms by which the diabetes genes they identify affect blood glucose levels. Their studies of pancreatic beta-cell development are focused on the identification of stem and progenitor cells that could be used to treat diabetes.