There are approximately 200 million people in the world with diabetes, including more than 2 million Canadians. The total economic burden of managing diabetic Canadians is over $13 billion per year. These figures are expected to escalate dramatically given the recent rise in childhood obesity and strong association of obesity with diabetes (80% of diabetics are obese). Indeed it has been estimated that 1 in 3 American children born in the year 2000 will develop diabetes. Despite the life saving discovery of insulin by Canadians in the 1920’s, diabetics still suffer from debilitating complications of the disease and typically live 15 years less than people without diabetes. The mission of the new UBC Diabetes and Obesity Group that will form in the Life Sciences Centre is to conduct world-class multi-disciplinary research aimed at understanding the underlying causes and ultimately finding cures for obesity and diabetes.