Cell, Developmntl, & Integrative Biology
Dr. Bamman was born in Manhattan, Kansas in 1966 and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. After earning a bachelor of science in exercise science from Kansas State University (1989) and a masters degree in exercise physiology from The University of Alabama at Birmingham (1990), he earned a PhD in the Department of Physiology at the University of Florida College of Medicine (1996). As a PhD candidate, Dr. Bamman traveled to the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas where he conducted space flight-related research on skeletal muscle (studying load-mediated physiologic alterations) for nearly three years. He joined the UAB faculty in 1996. Dr. Bamman's research program focuses on skeletal muscle and exercise biology. He is the Director of the UAB Center for Exercise Medicine, and his interdisciplinary, translational research program involves co-investigators from Geriatric Medicine, Cardiology, Surgery, Physical Therapy, and Physiology and Biophysics.
Additional appointments at UAB: Dr. Bamman holds secondary appointments in the Department of Nutrition Sciences and Department of Medicine (Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics, and Palliative Care). He is Associate Director of the Center for Aging, and holds appointments in the Nutrition Obesity Research Center, Comprehensive Diabetes Center, Center for Cardiovascular Biology, Diabetes Research and Training Center, Center for Metabolic Bone Disease, and Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engineering.
Muscle atrophy and reduced functional capacity are well-established, deleterious consequences of acute (e.g., burn, trauma, disuse) and chronic (e.g., OA/HIV/RA/cancer cachexia, COPD, diabetes mellitus, spinal cord injury) conditions—the most widespread and insidious of which is the degenerative process of normal aging. Because the metabolic and contractile properties of skeletal muscle play essential roles in the overall health and function of the organism, gaining a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying muscle mass and phenotype regulation, as well as key processes to exploit in countermeasure development, is of utmost importance. To this end, mechanisms of adult human skeletal myogenesis and muscle mass regulation remain the overarching areas of study in our laboratory, with a prominent emphasis on the aging muscle. Our primary research objectives span three, inter-related focus areas in human subjects: Objective 1) to determine the cellular and molecular mechanisms driving muscle regeneration following damage or injury, while identifying differences responsible for regeneration impairment in the aging muscle; Objective 2) to better understand the primary etiology of muscle atrophy in acute (burn, trauma) and chronic (sarcopenia, cachexia) conditions; and Objective 3) to determine key processes responsible for myofiber hypertrophy in response to mechanical overload, and to exploit these processes with countermeasures to promote muscle re-growth in atrophied patients. To meet these objectives, we are using genomic, proteomic, and in vitro approaches to study the molecular regulation of muscle protein synthesis, proteolysis, and stem (satellite) cell function in humans experiencing atrophy and resistance training-induced hypertrophy. This translational research program takes full advantage of cellular and molecular studies in our Core Muscle Research Laboratory and in vivo functional assessments during clinical trials in the UAB Center for Exercise Medicine.