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Tom Jurrissen

PhD Student in Exercise PhysiologyThomas JurrissenTom Jurrissen grew up in a small-town North Carolina and graduated from Appalachian State University with both his BS and MS in Exercise Science. Since enrolling into the University of Missouri, his research is centered around understanding the mechanisms by which obesity and insulin resistance result in metabolic and endothelial dysfunction.

Why did you choose Mizzou?

I choose Mizzou because I wanted to study endocrinology and cardiovascular disease in the setting of obesity and insulin resistance. After arriving at Mizzou for the interview process, everyone was genuinely interested in me and my research interests and goals. But the biggest selling point was the comradery and collaborations within the department and across campus.

What is your thesis/dissertation about?

My dissertation is focused on the role of adropin on vascular insulin resistance and endothelial function in the setting of type 2 diabetes. Using cell culture and rodent models, alongside genetic and pharmaceutical manipulation, we will interrogate the mechanism by which adropin may be mediating its effects on the vascular system.

Why did you choose the field you chose?

I choose this field because I have always found physiology and the human body fascinating and when I learned in undergrad the importance of exercise on metabolic health, I was hooked. Since then, I have wanted to continue to learn about metabolic diseases and various ways to treat them.

Have your career goals changed?

Since starting my PhD, I would have to say no, but the emphasis within academia may have shifted.

Where do you plan to go upon graduation?

I am in the process of looking for a postdoctoral position upon graduation.

What did you like about Mizzou?

Being at Mizzou has afforded me the opportunity to work with and contribute to groundbreaking research with phenomenal faculty and make lifelong friends in the process.

Who was your mentor?

I work very closely with Dr. Jaume Padilla, my primary doctoral mentor, and Dr Luis Martinez-Lemus in the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center.