Advisory Board

Professor Dudley Lamming

Dudley Lamming, Ph.D. is Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine’s Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, and is a Research Health Scientist at William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital.

He is also a federally funded principal investigator at The Lamming Laboratory for the Molecular Physiology of Aging, whose research aims to harness nutrient-responsive signaling pathways to promote health and longevity.

Understanding and manipulating these pathways through dietary, pharmaceutical, or genetic interventions may provide insight into the treatment of age-related diseases, including diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome.

Dudley’s lab discovered that low-protein diets promote metabolic health—improving blood sugar control and reducing adiposity—in humans and mice, and has identified dietary branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) as key regulators of these effects. His team currently studies the mechanisms that mediate these beneficial effects in mice and humans, with the goal of identifying interventions to promote healthy aging and to treat or prevent diabetes and obesity.

A key molecular focus of the lab is the mechanistic Target of Rapamycin (mTOR), an amino acid- and insulin-responsive protein kinase that is a central regulator of metabolism and aging. Dudley’s lab investigates the role of the mTOR Complex 1 (mTORC1) and mTOR Complex 2 (mTORC2) in metabolism, health, and longevity.

It all started in 2014, when Dudley was reading a study out of Australia that looked at how mice responded to dozens of controlled diets when one thing caught his attention: The mice fed the least amount of protein were the healthiest. Read How Low-Protein Diets Might Reprogram Metabolism.

“If I was under the age of 65, I’d probably think about ways to decrease my protein intake a bit,” Dudley said. “Pretty much everyone is eating too much protein.”

The lab is also examining the ability of geroprotective interventions to treat or prevent Alzheimer’s disease using mouse models.

Dudley’s lab recently had a breakthrough experiment, when his team compared the health benefits of traditional caloric restriction to caloric restriction with fasting in mice. Caloric restriction in combination with fasting resulted in an extended lifespan in mice. But, interestingly, caloric restriction alone was associated with a shorter lifespan.

“Normally, calorie restriction with fasting results is associated with improved insulin sensitivity, less frailty with age, and beneficial effects on memory. However, in this study, none of these benefits were seen without fasting,” Dudley explains.

It turns out that fasting alone had health benefits in mice, even without calorie restriction. When you give mice their daily caloric intake but only let them eat in a two-hour window, they experience the same health benefits as mice that are fasted with calorie restriction. Fasting periods were beneficial for multiple health outcomes in mice.

Read Fasting drives the metabolic, molecular and geroprotective effects of a calorie-restricted diet in mice. Read UW-Madison study shows fasting, calorie restriction lead to longer, healthier lives for mice.

While long-term calorie restriction can provide health benefits, fasting may provide a boost to the effects, new research suggests.

Dudley was 2015 Recipient of the Glenn Foundation for Medical Research and AFAR Grant for Junior Faculty for aging research on sexual dimorphism in response to longevity interventions. His previous work has indicated that a gene called Rictor, which plays an important role in the function of the liver, may be responsible for the differential effects of rapamycin in males and females.

Read Longer lifespan in male mice treated with a weakly estrogenic agonist, an antioxidant, an a-glucosidase inhibitor or aNrf2-inducer and Sex and genetic background define the metabolic, physiologic, and molecular response to protein restriction. Read FGF21 has a sex-specific role in calorie-restriction-induced beiging of white adipose tissue in mice.

Dudley earned his Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology at Harvard University in 2008. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree of Science in Nuclear Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2000.

He was Postdoctoral Fellow at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge from 2008, where he was also Senior Research Associate until 2013.

Before going for his Ph.D., Dudley was Associate Scientist at Enanta Pharmaceuticals between 2000 and 2002. Entatna is a clinical stage biotechnology company dedicated to creating oral drugs for viral infections and liver diseases.

Previously, in 1998, Dudley was Technical Intern at the Los Alamos National Laboratory working on Nondestructive Testing and also UROP Intern at MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering.

Dudley is Fellow and President Elect in the Executive Committee of the American Aging Association (AEG). He is Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, a recipient of the Gerontological Society of America Nathan Shock New Investigator Award and the American Physiological Society (Endocrinology and Metabolism Section) New Investigator Award, and an editorial board member of several peer-reviewed scientific journals.

His research has been supported by the National Institute on Aging, an institute of the National Institute of Health, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR), the Glenn Foundation for Medical Research, the Wisconsin Partnership Program, the Progeria Research Foundation, and the American Diabetes Association.

In 2022, Dudley presented his latest research on the topic Beyond the Calorie: The regulation of health and longevity by a specific dietary amino acid at the worlds’ largest annual Aging Research and Drug Discovery conference (9th ARDD).

Watch Calorie Restriction, Fasting & Low-Protein Diet, Lowering BCAA Intake Contributes To Metabolic Health, BCAA Restriction Extends Lifespan 30%, Human Studies On BCAAs And Metabolic Health, and Implementing A Low BCAA Diet. Watch Branched-chain amino acids and healthy aging and Diet, Protein, Amino Acids, Fasting, Metabolic Health & Aging.

Listen to Surprising Findings From Protein-Restriction Studies and Longevity Expert Dr. Lamming Discusses How Fasting Drives Metabolic & Aging Benefits in Mice. Listen to How fasting may offer health benefits beyond dieting and #ExpertAnswers: Dudley Lamming on Aging Science.

Read Adiponectin receptor agonist AdipoRon improves skeletal muscle function in aged mice. Read Short-term consumption of a plant protein diet does not improve glucose homeostasis of young C57BL/6J mice and Restriction of dietary protein decreases mTORC1 in tumors and somatic tissues of a tumor-bearing mouse xenograft model.

Visit his LinkedIn profile, Google Scholar, ResearchGate profile, Semantic Scholar, and ORCiD profile. Follow him at the NIH’s National Library of Medicine Bibliography, Loop, Facebook, and Twitter.