Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism

The Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism at the University of Minnesota is uniquely poised to become a premier research institute that is focused on advancing knowledge of the pathophysiology of diabetes and its complications through cutting edge research.


The mission of the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism (IDOM) is to enhance research quality by growing multidisciplinary collaborations in diabetes research by creating a rich environment that unites diabetes investigators through enrichment and training opportunities, to provide access to pilot funds, and to make cost-effective animal physiology services available to members of the IDOM. Our goal is to create the environment and infrastructure necessary to support funded diabetes investigators and the integration of their data into our greater understanding of the whole of diabetes.

We are committed to creating a research environment that supports fundamental projects designed to understand the basic biology of the disease and then translating these findings to humans. This commitment will ensure that our basic findings are relevant to the human model and support of the development of new ways to prevent and treat the disease and its complications.

How to Join

Individuals applying for membership should submit a current CV and a cover letter to with the subject IDOM membership request. The cover letter should include:

  • Why the investigator wants to join the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
  • What expertise and research interests he/she brings, and
  • An idea of the collaboration or research in which he/she would like to engage.

Pilot and Feasibility Awards Description and Considerations

A key component of a successful future NIH P30 application to create the Minnesota-Iowa Diabetes Research Center is evidence of a robust and successful Pilot and Feasibility program.  The P&F program would be focused on new and established investigators pursuing diabetes projects individually, or in collaboration with investigators at the University of Iowa.  To that end, the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism (IDOM) at the University of Minnesota and the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center (FOEDRC) at the University of Iowa will provide up to 4 awards to establish our joint Pilot and Feasibility Program that will support new projects led by a PI at each institution.  To encourage partnership applications, the budget for university-specific P&F funding will be $100,000 for two years ($50k/year) while that for a joint Minnesota-Iowa project will be $200,000 for two years ($50k/yr. for each site).  Funding for at least 2 of the 4 projects will be targeted to collaborative efforts led by PI’s from both institutions.  The program will provide time limited seed funding to investigators to generate or strengthen preliminary data that will increase their competitiveness for receiving substantial competitive extramural grant funding. These awards seek to support new and innovative research projects that will increase the understanding of fundamental mechanisms that inform the pathophysiology of diabetes and its complications or lead to translational approaches and clinical innovations. 

The general considerations for all applications are as follows:

  • Applications in all areas of diabetes and obesity research are eligible
  • Must advance the understanding or evaluate the natural history/mechanism, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of diabetes or obesity
  • Must have a high expectation for successful completion of research goals in two years
  • Expected to result in a successful NIH application (e.g., R, P or U series) from each funded research project within two years of completion
  • Joint applications by Minnesota-Iowa partners will be given preference for funding

General Considerations for full proposals:

  • A faculty member may apply for only one grant per cycle on which he/she would be a PI. There is no limitation to the number of grants on which a faculty member would participate as a collaborator.
  • A proposal may be resubmitted once. A description of the changes made from a prior application should be included as part of the application.
  • A PRF is not required unless a P&F application is approved for funding. At that time a PRF will be requested.
  • The deadline for receipt of complete proposals is Friday, July 17, 2020 and awards announced August 2020.
  • Principal investigator(s) of funded projects will be required to provide a final report and an accounting of all funds expended at the completion of the project. A progress report will be required at the end of the first fiscal year. Further information about how to submit this information will follow upon receipt of award.

Questions should be addressed to David Bernlohr,

Post-Doctoral Training

In existence since 1977, the post-doctoral training program in diabetes, endocrinology, and metabolism at the University of Minnesota has prepared MDs and PhDs for successful research careers in academic medicine. This preparation has centered upon the critical interaction between the trainee and the research mentor.

All mentors in this program have national or international reputations in their respective areas and have strong track records in mentoring. Our faculty have expertise in cellular metabolism and genetics; endocrinology and signaling; neurobiology and appetite regulation of obesity; stem cell biology, autoimmunity, and β-cell biology; and clinical aspects of endocrine disease.

Trainees enter the program after they have either completed a residency program in internal medicine or received a PhD in a biological science at a major research University. Graduates of the program are established at Universities and research institutions worldwide.

We are currently accepting applications for a November 2020 start date. Applications must be received by September 1, 2020

Current opportunities

For more information and the application process click here


Elizabeth Seaquist, MD
David Bernlohr, PhD

Enrichment Activities

Please click on the link below to access the recording of our April 20th Frontiers in Obesity, Diabetes and Metabolism Seminar presented by Dr. Anne Peters, Director of the USC Clinical Diabetes Program at the Keck School of Medicine. This seminar was co-sponsored by the University of Iowa Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center (FOEDRC) and the University of Minnesota Institute for Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism (IDOM).

Frontiers in Obesity, Diabetes and Metabolism Seminar

"Diabetes and COVID-19"
Dr. Anne Peters