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Department of Biology
University of Ottawa

Our research deals with all aspects of animal energetics.  Focus has been on how animals manage energy reserves and how they select an appropriate mix of metabolic fuels to cope with extreme situations.  We carry out experiments where endurance exercise, cold exposure, prolonged fasting or environmental hypoxia are used to manipulate the rate of energy expenditure of the whole organism.  The goal is to integrate molecular, cell, tissue, and organismal information to understand the design of energy supply pathways.  We often use experimental models showing extraordinary capacity for energy flux, either very low or unusually high. Recently, we have been particularly interested in the metabolic adaptations of long-distance migrants and in the physiological roles of membranes.

Energy metabolism: the basics

Weber J-M (1999)
Energy cycle in vertebrates: From food to ATP.
In Nature Encyclopedia of Life Sciences.
John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester.

Regulating metabolic fuel selection

Weber J-M (2011)
Metabolic fuels: regulating fluxes to select mix.
J. Exp. Biol. 214: 286-294.

Metabolic fuels in fish

Weber J-M, Choi K, Gonzalez A and Omlin T (2016)
Metabolic fuel kinetics in fish: swimming, hypoxia and muscle membranes.
J. Exp. Biol. 219: 250-258.

Physiological adaptations of long-distance migrants

Weber J-M (2009)
The physiology of long-distance migration: extending the limits of endurance metabolism.
J. Exp. Biol. 212: 593-597.