Ricki Colman

Credentials: Cell & Regenerative Biology, Primate Center

Position title: Assistant Professor

Email: rcolman@primate.wisc.edu

Phone: 608-263-3544

Organ System/Disease Focus
Nonhuman primate models of aging and metabolism
Aligned Research Focus
Aging, metabolism, nutrition, cognition, behavior, development


Research Description

My research is based at the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center where I lead the Energy Metabolism and Chronic Diseases Working Group. My laboratory utilizes nonhuman primate models to explore the impact of nutrition and metabolism on health across the aging continuum. The bulk of my research has focused on the ability of aging interventions, such as calorie restriction, to modulate the aging process. Caloric restriction offers a powerful way to explore mechanisms of aging because it is the only environmental intervention that repeatedly and strongly increases maximum life span and delays aging in a diverse array of experimental organisms. The driving hypothesis behind this work is that caloric restriction induces an altered state of energy metabolism that promotes health and longevity. This work includes studies from the whole animal to molecular level. More recently, I have begun to explore cellular senescence and the impact of senescent cell removal on the aging process as well as the long-term consequences of early life diet.

Selected References:
  1. Colman RJ, Anderson RM, Johnson SC, Kastman EK, Kosmatka KJ, Beasley TM, Allison DB, Cruzen C, Simmons HA, Kemnitz JW, Weindruch R. Caloric restriction delays disease onset and mortality in rhesus monkeys. Science. 325:201-204, 2009. PMC2812811.
  2. Colman RJ, Beasley TM, Kemnitz JW, Johnson SC, Weindruch R, Anderson RM. Caloric restriction reduces age-related and all-cause mortality in rhesus monkeys. Nature Commun. 5:3557, 2014. doi:10.1038/ncomms4557. PMC3988801.
  3. Mattison JA*, Colman RJ*, Beasley TM, Allison DB, Kemnitz JW, Roth GS, Ingram DK, Weindruch R, deCabo R, Anderson RM. Caloric restriction improves health and survival of rhesus monkeys. Nature Commun. 8:14063, 2017. doi:10.1038/ncomms14063. PMC5247583. *Joint first authors
  4. Maegawa S, Lu Y, Tahara T, Lee JT, Madzo J, Liang S, Jelinek JJ, Colman RJ, Issa J-PJ. Caloric restriction delays age-related methylation drift. Nature Commun. 8(1):539, 2017. doi:10.1038/s41467-017-00607-3. PMCID:PMC5599616.
  5. Rhoads TW, Clark JP, Gustafson GE, Miller KN, Conklin MW, DeMuth TM, Berres ME, Eliceiri KW, Vaughan LK, Duarte CW, Beasley TM, Colman RJ, Anderson RM. Molecular and functional networks linked to sarcopenia prevention by caloric restriction in rhesus monkeys. Cell Systems. 10(2):156-168.e5, 2020. doi: 10.1016/j.cells.2019.12.002. PMCID:PMC7047532.