Robert Mecham, PhD

Alumni Endowed Professor of Cell Biology and Physiology and of Medicine, Pediatrics, and Bioengineering Cell Biology and Physiology

Research Interest


Metabolic Regulation and Obesity

Category(ies) of Research


Descriptor of Research

My laboratory is interested in how extracellular matrix influences the phenotype of cells. Of particular interest is the role of extracellular matrix in initiating differentiation and in maintaining appropriate gene expression in the differentiated phenotype. We are interested in identifying biologically active signals within extracellular matrix molecules that act directly on cell function. We have recently deleted in mice the gene for MAGP1, and ECM protein that functions to regulate TGF-β and BMP growth factor activity. These animals have a larger body size than WT animals due to increased fat and muscle. We are interested in determining what metabolic changes occur to produce these phenotypes and how MAGP1 influences fat and muscle cell differentiation.

Mecham Lab