The mechanisms initiating the onset of type 2 diabetes (T2D) has eluded scientists for decades. Scientific consensus agrees that chronic inflammation downstream of a high fat diet is a causative factor for T2D. Nevertheless, it is unclear how diet induces this chronic inflammation. In the Nicholas lab, we are probing untested mechanisms of lipid-induced immune cell activation to tackle how chronic inflammation in T2D begins. The long-term goal of this project is to determine how a high fat diet and obesity initiates inflammation thereby identifying molecular targets for the development of curative therapeutics for T2D.