Heikki Allan Koistinen, dosentti

  • PL 22 (Haartmaninkatu 4)




Tutkimustuotoksia vuodessa

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Henkilökohtainen profiili

Tutkimuksen ja opetuksen kuvaus

Research, teaching and university activities



I received MD degree at University of Helsinki in 1994 and Doctor of Medical Sciences-degree at University of Helsinki in 1999. After completing two post-doctoral visits abroad (first one with Dr Hubert Vidal at INSERM U449, Lyon France 1999-2000; the second one at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden, 2000-2002 with professor Juleen R. Zierath and professor Harriet Wallberg-Henrikson), I returned in Finland to complete my training as a medical specialist in Internal Medicine (2002-8) and Endocrinology (2010-12). Concommitantly, I have built up a research group of my own, which I have lead since 2002.


Independent Research Activities

My group is currently functional at Minerva Foundation Institute for Medical Research, at Biomedicum 2 Helsinki. We are performing studies on regulation of metabolism in human skeletal muscle, with particular interest in the cellular mechanisms leading to insulin resistance. We have set-up the in vitro methods to study glucose and lipid metabolism in muscle cells or in intact human skeletal muscle strips obtained from surgical muscle biopsies of vastus lateralis muscle. We have set-up primary human muscle cell cultures established from satellite cells. We currently have > 100 muscle cell lines of carefully characterized humans across all glucose tolerance categories. These complementary models allow for detailed studies on molecular regulation of glucose and lipid metabolism in human skeletal muscle.


International Scientific Collaboration

I have participated in the FUSION (Finnish-United States Investigation of NIDDM Genetics) study since 2010, and I am the formal co-ordinating person in the Finnish part of the FUSION at National Institute for Health and Welfare, from January 2012 onwards. I am one of the FUSION Principal Investigators (PI) from July 2013 onwards and participate in scientific decisions within the FUSION Steering Board. FUSION is one of the most important research projects into the genetics of T2D and has been ongoing since 1994. In FUSION, I collaborate closely with other PI:s: Professor Michael Boehnke (lead PI for FUSION), University of Michigan, Ann Arbor; Professor Francis Collins, director of National Institutes of Health, USA; Professor Karen L Mohlke, University of North Carolina, Associate Professor Richard Watanabe, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; and Professor Richard Bergman, Cedars-Sinai Diabetes and Obesity Research Institute, Los Angeles. My Finnish FUSION collaborators are Professor Emeritus Jaakko Tuomilehto, University of Helsinki, Professor Markku Laakso and Professor Timo Lakka, University of Eastern Finland.


Teaching experience and pedagogical training

I have a Finnish Medical Association Special Competence to train medical doctors, and a versatile  practical teaching experience: I have acted as a clinical teacher of Internal Medicine in 2007-9  and 2015 onwards teaching medical students Internal Medicine (cardiology, gastroenterology, nephrology, hematology, rheumatoid diseases and endocrinology). I have improved my pedagological skills by completing 25 Cr of Pedagogy for University Teachers at University of Helsinki (grade: excellent), and my official lecture when applying Adjunct Professorship (Title of Docent)  on 8.10.2002, Helsinki University Central Hospital:  ”Treatment of patients with type 2 diabetes”  was graded as excellent. I have contributed 4 articles in Finnish medical textbooks and several clinical case reports in Finnish medical journals.


Activities at University

I have participated in developing assessment methods of the students in examinations at Faculty of Medicine: in close collaboration with the medical students, and the members of the board of the medical bachelors´association at University of Helsinki, we made a proposal to the Faculty of Medicine to evaluate examinations anonymously in order to enhance the legal protection and to improve the objectivity of the evaluations. Our motion was accepted and implemented in the Faculty of Medicine in 2009. I have acted as a board member of Programme for Translational Medicine at University of Helsinki 2011-13. Currently I participate closely in the planning and development of the new curriculum of endocrinology for medical students at University of Helsinki, to be implemented from autumn semester 2016 onwards. On 15.4.2015, I have been nominated by the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine as the person in charge of the course on endocrinology (opintojakso-vastaava).


  • 3121 Yleislääketiede, sisätaudit ja muut kliiniset lääketieteet
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Insulin resistance
  • Metabolism
  • Insulin signaling
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Adipose tissue
  • Genetics

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