Research Acknowledgement

It is extremely important that our grant is cited in all publications resulting from the use of NORC services. Our productivity and effectiveness as a Center is measured in part by the citation of the grant in published work. Please use the following acknowledgement in your publications:

This work utilized Core Services supported by grant DK089503 of NIH to the University of Michigan.

Core Services: Human Phenotyping

Co-Directors: Jeffrey Horowitz, PhD, School of Kinesiology and Karen Peterson, DSc, School of Public Health

The overall objective of the Human Phenotyping Core (HPC) is to enhance and expand the research capabilities of investigators performing clinical and translational studies related to nutritional interventions, obesity, or obesity-related disorders in humans. The HPC is a service core of the Michigan Metabolomic and Obesity Center (MMOC) and the Michigan Nutrition and Obesity Research Center (NORC), however services are available to all university researchers.

You can apply for membership now at (there is no fee for membership).

The Human Phenotyping Core provides:

  • Consultation services to university investigators regarding appropriate testing/assessment, and/or intervention approaches for their studies.
  • Standardized and sophisticated nutritional assessments and physiological testing of human subjects for obesity related studies.
  • Services to directly assist researchers in conducting dietary, behavioral, and/or exercise intervention in human subjects.
  • Training in many techniques or the assistance in development of new techniques/technologies needed for the metabolic and neurobehavioral assessment of humans.

HPC services are provided in three categories: 1) General Phenotyping services (e.g., body composition, resting metabolic rate, insulin sensitivity), 2) Bionutrition support through the Nutrition Assessment Laboratory (NAL), and 3) Physical activity/exercise assessments, testing, and exercise intervention support through the Physical Activity Laboratory (PAL).

Research Facilities

Nutrition Assessment Laboratory (NAL)

Located in the Michigan Clinical Research Unit (MCRU) on Level 1 of the Cardiovascular Center (CVC) of UMHS, this facility includes a full metabolic kitchen, and NAL staff offices. Current services include dietary assessment design and execution, nutrition counseling, and menu development. These services are provided jointly by The Momentum Center.

Physical Activity Laboratory (PAL)

Primary location of the PAL is on the 3rd floor of the UMHS Burlington Building. This facility includes an exercise/metabolic testing room and an anthropometric assessment room (including Bod Pod). Current services include a variety of exercise tests, physical activity assessment design and execution, and support for supervised exercise interventions. There is also an exercise physiology testing room available within the MCRU on Level 1 of the CVC.

General Phenotyping

General Phenotyping services are provided at both NAL and PAL locations (i.e., both MCRU and Burlington Building). The site where the service will be provided will depend on the specific service being requested (e.g., DEXA, Bod Pod, clamp procedures, tissue-specific analysis). The specific site for services you are interested will be clarified when you speak with HPC staff about your study’s needs.

Request for Services – Process

Have a question regarding nutrition, physical activity, or body composition? Need help finding the right assessment measure? Just getting started on that grant or IRB application and need a study consultation? We would love to help you!


  • Allow 2 business days for a response
  • After completing the service request for, we can set up a phone or in-person meeting to discuss your study needs

Once HPC Staff fully understands your study needs (and you have IRB approval) we can begin coordinating with your study team to provide the services you requested. At this point we need you to complete our “STUDY INITIATION FORM”.

  • This is a separate form from our “Service request form”
  • This “Study Initiation Form” must be completed at least 2 weeks before your first participant.
  • The purpose of this form is to confirm the study team and the HPC are both fully aware of the exact services being provided for the study.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: If the HPC services you are requesting are performed within the MCRU you will need MCRU approval (via eResearch) before we can provide any services. In addition, your study team will be responsible for scheduling MCRU room reservations for your participants directly with MCRU staff – and your study team must also ensure that this schedule aligns with the availability of the HPC staff member(s) providing the services. This process can be explained in greater detail when you speak with HPC staff.


For more information, please email: