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Contact Information

Fraser W. Scott, PhD

Direct Line: 613-737-8929

What We Do

T1D is an autoimmune disease in which the patient's immune system destroys the insulin-producing β-cells in the pancreatic islets. The rise in incidence over the past 50-60 years is not explained by changes in genetic risk, but is thought to be due to factors in the environment including viruses, dietary antigens and gut microbes.  All of these agents first encounter the immune system in the gastrointestinal tract. Thus, successful treatment or prevention of diabetes depends on a better understanding of how these factors influence the gut immune system, pancreas inflammation and β-cell health.  Our research aims to understand how the environment controls whether autoimmune type 1 diabetes will occur in susceptible individuals.  The group employs molecular and cellular approaches to understand the role of dietary antigens, microbiota, the gut immune system and the endocrine pancreas in the development of diabetes.   

Selected Publications

Patrick C, Wang GS, Lefebvre DE, Crookshank JA, Sonier B, Eberhard C, Mojibian M, Kennedy C, Brooks SPJ, Kalmokoff M, Maglio M, Troncone R, Poussier P, Scott FW.  Promotion of autoimmune diabetes by cereal diet in the presence or absence of microbes associated with gut immune activation, regulatory imbalance and altered cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide.  Diabetes  62:2036–2047, 2013

Jörns A, Arndt T,  Vilsendorf AM, Klempnauer J, Wedekind D, Hedrich HJ, Marselli L, Marchetti P, Harada N, Nakaya Y, Wang GS, Scott FW, Gysemans C, Mathieu C, Lenzen S.  Islet infiltration, immune cell activation and β-cell death in the NOD mouse, BB rat, Komeda rat, and LEW.1AR1-iddm rat in comparison with the pancreas of patients with type 1 diabetes.  Diabetologia, 57:512-21 2014

Mojibian M, Chakir H, Lefebvre DE, Crookshank JA, Sonier B, Keely E, Scott FW. A diabetes-specific HLA-DR restricted pro-inflammatory T cell response to wheat polypeptides in tissue transglutaminase antibody negative patients with type 1 diabetes. Diabetes 58: 17891796, 2009 (See Editorial Commentary, p. 1723)

MacFarlane AJ, Strom A, Scott FW. Epigenetics – Deciphering how environmental factors may modify autoimmune Type 1 diabetes Mammalian Genome, 20:624-32, 2009

Sonier B, Patrick C, Ajjikuttira P, Scott FW Intestinal immune regulation as a potential diet-modifiable feature of gut inflammation and autoimmunity International Reviews of Immunology, 28:414-45, 2009

Meet the FW SCOTT LAB Group