The O’Connell Lab focuses on applying integrated metabolomics analyses to develop new precision diagnostics and determine the metabolic drivers of cancer-associated cachexia and other wasting conditions. Laboratory members investigate the use of specific metabolic reprogramming agents targeted toward the resuscitation of a healthy metabolic phenotype in skeletal muscle while not interfering with and potentially even augmenting the action of chemotherapeutic agents.
In addition to cachexia, the O’Connell Lab is actively engaged in studies of bone metabolism related to aging. Using in vitro and in vivo models, researchers examine novel metabolic pathways involved in muscle-bone cross-talk that can help maintain bone health.
The O’Connell Lab is part of the Center for Cachexia Research Innovation and Therapy (CCRIT), an international multidisciplinary research effort dedicated to prevent muscle wasting due to cancer and chemotherapy. Dr. O’Connell is a faculty member in the Department of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery.