Barbara Cannon

Professors emeritus

Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute, University of Stockholm


Thermogenesis is the use of energy with the purpose of only producing heat, a wasteful process that Nature would normally avoid. Nonetheless, through developing the unique process of nonshivering thermogenesis, mammals gained in evolutionary terms. Nonshivering thermogenesis emanates from the activity of the mitochondrial protein UC P1 in brown adipose tissue. We use novel model systems to advance the understanding of mammalian thermogenesis, at three levels of organization:

At the organism level, through new mouse models, we study the relative significance of two adipose tissues, brown and brite/beige, for both classical cold-induced nonshivering thermogenesis and for diet-induced thermogenesis – the latter a process that, due to its potential significance for energy balance, has gained much interest.

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