Brehm Center Researchers
"The interrelation between The Brehm Center investigators, The Brehm Coalition and the faculty at the University of
Ernesto Bernal-Mizrachi, M.D.
Larry D. Soderquist Professor
Associate Professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology & Diabetes
U-M Brehm Investigator
The U-M Comprehensive Diabetes Center welcomed Dr. Ernesto Bernal-Mizrachi to the team in July 2009. Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi is the Larry D. Soderquist Professor, a professorship that is funded by the generosity of Dee and Bill Brehm in honor of Dee's late brother.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi received his M.D. degree from Universidad del Valle in Cali, Colombia, in 1989. After two years at the Universidad del Valle, he continued his internal medicine training at the University of Miami Jackson Memorial Hospital.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi then accepted a fellowship in endocrinology at Washington University in St. Louis, MO (1996–1999). He started his academic career as a junior faculty member at Washington University in 2000 and became an assistant professor of medicine in 2004.
Dr. Bernal-Mizrachi's research interests involve studying how pancreatic insulin producing beta cells (β-cells) regulate blood glucose levels by secreting appropriate amounts of insulin. It is now clear that in the abnormalities found in type 1 and type 2 diabetes, a decrease in the number and function of insulin producing cells is a common event. The number of β-cells is variable and can be adjusted to produce more insulin to supply increased demands. Proliferation of mature β-cells is critical for maintenance of β-cell mass in adult mice. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms that govern proliferation of β-cells will provide important information to protect against, prevent, and cure diabetes.
The long-term goal of Dr Bernal-Mizrachi's research program is to determine the signaling pathways and molecular mechanisms involved in the regulation of β-cell mass. This is expected to positively affect treatment of human diabetes, because it would allow uncovering potential targets to develop new pharmacologic agents designed to augment survival and proliferation of β-cells in vivo and in vitro.
Larry D. Soderquist, the brother of Delores (Dee) Brehm, was one of the nation's most respected securities law scholars and director of the Corporate and Securities Law Institute at Vanderbilt University Law School before his death from injuries he sustained in an auto accident. A native of Ypsilanti, Michigan, Mr. Soderquist was a graduate of Eastern Michigan University, where he received the bachelor's degree in 1966, and earned his law degree from Harvard University in 1969. In 1971, he joined the Wall Street law firm of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley and McCloy. In 1976, he left law practice to accept a faculty appointment at the University of Notre Dame Law School, followed by a one-year visiting professorship at Vanderbilt University. Mr. Soderquist's one-year appointment transitioned into a full-time tenured faculty position at that institution.
Mr. Soderquist taught and wrote on corporate and securities law. The textbooks and law review articles he wrote, along with the Practising Law Institute training programs he conducted around the country, led to Mr. Soderquist being recognized as one of the nation's foremost experts in securities law. Two of the most notable books he authored are Understanding the Securities Laws (an edition of which was published in the People's Republic of China in 2004) and Investor's Rights Handbook. In addition to eight books and numerous articles on law, for a time he wrote a weekly column for the Nashville Business Journal.