Jesse Roth, MD, FACP

Investigator & Head, Laboratory for Diabetes and Diabetes-Related Research,
The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research

Professor of Molecular Medicine, Elmezzi Graduate School of Molecular Medicine

Professor of Medicine, Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine

Phone: (718) 767-8952

About the Investigator

Jesse Roth has actively worked in this field for fifty years at major centers in the USA. His work has been recognized with awards for highest scientific achievement from the Endocrine Society and from the American Diabetes Association (as well as other major organizations in the field). He is author of many hundreds of publications, which appear regularly in established professional journals; many have been cited because of their special impact in the field.

Research Focus

The world wide pandemic of obesity and diabetes now affects adolescents and children as well as adults in developing as well as industrialized nations. These two conditions and their complications affect the structure and function of nearly all tissues in the body, resulting in morbidity, cognitive decline, accelerated aging, and premature death.

How can we diagnose diabetes earlier

By the time a patient’s blood glucose level crosses the line to trigger the standard diagnosis of diabetes, cells all over the body (including those in the brain) have already sustained substantial damage. Some of this early damage is irreversible, even with excellent care subsequently. We have found that individual patients maintain blood glucose (and hemoglobin A1c, a surrogate for glucose) in a narrow range. We are testing the hypothesis that both of these markers break out of their tight range and start a slow but inexorable march upwards (a condition we label “dysglycemia” in the 3-5 years before diabetes is diagnosable). Likewise, basal levels of insulin (and C-peptide, a surrogate measure of insulin secretion) rise out of their own narrow ranges in the 5-10 years before diabetes is diagnosable (a condition we label “dysinsulinemia”). We suspect that diet and exercise, introduced early can slow or prevent the progression from dysinsulinemia and dysglycemia to bona fide diabetes.

The Microbiome

Starting at birth, each of us regularly hosts hundreds of trillions of microbes, roughly ten times more numerous than our own cells, referred to as the microbiome. While their existence has been known for almost five hundred years, it has been only in the last decade with new technology and insights that their importance is starting to emerge. Indeed, the NIH has singled it out as a major new focus of research. With the world wide pandemic of obesity, particular interest is being paid to the changes in the populations of microbes in the intestinal tract along with changes in microbial metabolism in obese and thin subjects and in association with changes in diets. We have recently discovered that E. coli, a representative bacterium resident in the intestine, when grown in isolation, releases a peptide that mimics melanocortin, a human hormone that plays a key role in inflammation, appetite regulation, and food intake. (Humans who lack melanocortin or one of the five types of melanocortin receptors are massively obese). These studies suggest that the microbes of the gut, in addition to contributing to the host’s metabolism and energy balance, may be providing hormone-like signals to the host’s cells.

Lab Members

Ian Whitford
Research Assistant
Research: Early diagnosis of diabetes, C-peptide history, IGF II, Melanocortin-like peptide in E. coli

Sneha Galiveeti
Research Assistant
Research: IGF II, Nephrogenic diabetes insipidus, cell surface receptors


Columbia University, NY
Degree: BA

Albert Einstein College of Medicine, NY
Degree: MD

Washington University (Barnes Hospital), St. Louis, MO
Degree: Residency

Bronx VA Medical Center (with SA Berson & RS Yalow = 1977 Nobel)
Degree: Research Fellow


1965-1966 Chief of Diabetes Section 1966-1974
1963-1965 Senior Investigator
1963-1974 Clinical Endocrinology Branch, National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases,
National Institutes of Health (Chief of Service – Jacob Robbins): Clinical Associate
1974-1983 Chief, Diabetes Branch, National Institute of Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases,
National Institutes of Health; (Scientific Director – Joseph E. Rall)
1983-1991 Director, Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases,
National Institutes of Health; Section Chief in the Diabetes Branch
1985-1991 Assistant Surgeon General, United States Public Health Service
1990-2000 Professor of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
1991-1998 Raymond and Anna Lublin Professor of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine;
Director, Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology and of Center on Aging
1998-1999 President and Chief Executive Officer, The Picower Institute for Medical Research, Manhasset, NY;
Professor, The Picower Graduate School of Molecular Medicine
2000-2006 Geriatrician-in-Chief, Northwell Health, Manhasset, New York;
Associate  Director, NIH-funded General Clinical Research Center, Feinstein Institute for Medical Research
2000-Present Investigator, Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, Northwell Health
2000-Present Professor of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Honors and Awards

1968 Maryland Academy of Sciences Distinguished Young Scientist
1974 Eli Lilly Award of the American Diabetes Association
1974 Service Honor Award of the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare
1974 Ernst Oppenheimer Memorial Award of the Endocrine Society
1977 David Rumbough Memorial Award for Scientific Achievement, Juvenile Diabetes Foundation
1978 G. Burroughs Mider Lectureship Award, National Institutes of Health
1979 First Annual Lita Annenberg Hazen Award for Superior Achievement in Research, NY
1979 Diaz Cristobal Prize presented at the International Diabetes Federation meeting
1979 Berson-Yalow Award of the Society of Nuclear Medicine
1980 Who’s Who in America
1980 Gairdner Foundation Annual Award, Toronto, Canada (Scientific Achievement)
1980 Distinguished Service Medal of the U.S. Public Health Service
1980 A. Cressy Morrison Award, New York Academy of Science
1981 Joslin Medal, New England Affiliate, American Diabetes Association
1982 Mellon Award, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
1982 Harvey Lecture
1982 First recipient of alumni Achievement Award, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
1982 Banting Medal, American Diabetes Association, highest award for scientific achievement
1982 American Academy of Arts and Sciences, elected fellow
1983 Otto Brandman Award, American Diabetes Association – New Jersey Affiliate
1985 Koch Award, Endocrine Society, highest award for scientific achievement
1987 Alpha Omega Alpha Award, University of Puerto Rico
1988 Steven C. Beering Award for Advancement of Biomedical Science, Indiana University
1988 National Medical Research Award, National Health Council, Washington, D.C.
1991 Lukens Award of the American Diabetes Association, Pennsylvania affiliate
1992 Elected, Honorary Member, Interurban Clinical Club
1993 Albert Renold Award American Diabetes Association for mentoring
2001 Italian Diabetes Society: Inaugural Award for Outstanding Mentoring of Young Researchers
2001 Endocrine Society: Robert H. Williams Distinguished Leadership Award for mentoring
2004 NIH Symposium: Celebrating the Diabetes Branch: A tribute to Jesse Roth and Phil Gorden
2006 Honorary Member, European Association for the Study of Diabetes

  1. Roth J., Szulc AL, Danoff A. (2011) “Energy, evolution, and human diseases: an overview.” Am J Clin Nutr. Apr; 93(4):875S-883S.
  2. Roth J. (2010) “Biomedical meetings and biomedical journals: vive la difference et vive la compagnie.” Diabetes Metab Res Rev. Nov; 26(8):598.
  3. Bitton S., Roth J. (2010) “Addressing food insecurity: freedom from want, freedom from fear.” JAMA Dec 1; 304 (21):2405-6 PMID: 21119087
  4. Dankner R., Danoff A., Roth J. (2010) “Can ‘personalized diagnostics’ promote earlier intervention for dysglycemia?” Hypothesis ready for testing. Diabetes Metab Res Rev.  Jan (26):7-9
  5. Roth J. (2009) “Evolutionary speculation about tuberculosis and the metabolic and inflammatory processes of obesity.” JAMA. Jun 24;301(24):2586-8.
  6. Dankner R, Chetrit A, Shanik MH, Raz I, Roth J. (2009) “Basal-state hyperinsulinemia in healthy normoglycemic adults is predictive of type 2 diabetes over a 24-year follow-up: a preliminary report.” Diabetes Care. Aug; 32(8):1464-6.
  7. Roth, J. (2009) Foreword for Diabetes in Old Age by Alan Sinclair. xi -xiii.
  8. Hsiao WW, Metz C., Singh DP, Roth J. (2008) “The microbes of the intestine: an introduction to their metabolic and signaling capabilities.” Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. Dec; 37(4):857-71. Review.
  9. Romao I., Roth J. (2008) “Genetic and environmental interactions in obesity and type 2 diabetes.” J Am Diet Assoc. Apr; 108 (4 Suppl 1):S24-8. Review.
  10. Shanik MH, Xu Y., Skrha J., Dankner R., Zick Y., Roth J. (2008) “Insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia: is hyperinsulinemia the cart or the horse?” Diabetes Care. Feb; 31 Suppl 2:S262-8. (Review)

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