Dr. Banks is also the director of the BIDMC Metabolic Core, a facility designed for the complete measurement of energy intake, nutritional status and energy expenditure in experimental mice.
The centerpiece of this core is a 16 cage Comprehensive Lab Animal Monitoring System (CLAMS) with environmental controls, which allows for powerful research and discovery, particularly in common metabolic disorders that include obesity, type 2 diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. A CLAMS is utilized for indirect calorimetry of unrestrained, conscious mice, yielding quantitative measurements of oxygen consumption (VO2), carbon dioxide production (VCO2), respiratory exchange ratio – an indicator of substrate utilization – and total energy expenditure. It also provides measures of basal locomotor activity and exercise tolerance, as well as caloric intake. Our CLAMS is specialized, allowing for the precise control of ambient temperature ranging from thermoneutrality (30°C) to cold (4°C). The use of a CLAMS in our studies has revealed profound changes in energy substrate utilization and induction of thermogenesis in multiple mouse models. Our CLAMS facility allows for study of 16 mice at a time allowing for multiple simultaneous experiments. The CLAMS is typically booked 2-3 months in advance by investigators.
Our other instrumentation allows for noninvasive quantitation of whole body fat and lean mass (EchoMRI), thermal heat radiation (FLIR camera) and energy consumed but not absorbed (fecal bomb calorimetry).
Composition of the core:
• 16 cage CLAMS
• PARR bomb calorimeter
• FLIR thermal imaging camera