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Diabetes – Cardiovascular Disease

Marju Orho-Melander’s group

Our research

In our research, we investigate large prospective population-based cohorts to understand the connections between cardiometabolic diseases (obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease) and human genetic variation. We also study the gut microbiome composition and function, circulating metabolites and proteins, and environmental factors with major focus on diet. 

We investigate cross-sectional and longitudinal connections and using human genetic variation we challenge the question of causal mechanisms. Our studies are based on the notion that the modifiability of the gut microbiome in the interphase of diet and metabolism may offer novel possibilities for disease prevention. For future tailoring of novel precision nutrition- or therapeutic gut microbiome-based approaches, robust evidence from large populations that cover the huge interindividual variability of gut microbiome is needed.   


  • To understand the importance of the gut microbiota for obesity, T2D, and cardiovascular disease, and the role of diet in these relationships utilizing large population cohorts. 
  • To identify causal biomarkers (gut microbes, plasma metabolites, and proteins) as potential interventional targets and discover novel gut bacterial strains with potentially health-promoting effects.


Our studies will provide novel understanding of the connection between the gut microbiome and cardiometabolic disease, and how this is related to diet, genetic variation, and metabolism. Our studies can discover potential new probiotic bacterial strains and evaluate the importance of bacteriophages for the gut bacterial composition and disease risk.

Research output

Link to a list of research output by the group in Lund University’s research portal

Team members

Link to a list of team members in Lund University's research portal

Current major grants

  • Research project grant within medicine and health from the Swedish Research Council 2022-2024
    Title: Novel approaches to investigate the potential of the gut microbiome for future preventive interventions for cardiometabolic disease
  • Project grant from Hjärt-Lungfonden 2021-2023
    Title: Gut microbiome in obesity, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease in 12.200 Swedes
  • Project grant in endocrinology and metabolism from Novo Nordisk Foundation 2021-2023
    Title: Gut microbiome in obesity and type 2 diabetes in 12.200 Swedes
Portrait of researcher.

Marju Orho-Melander

Principal Investigator
Professor of genetic epidemiology
+46 70 739 82 89
+46 40 39 12 10
marju [dot] orho-melander [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se 

Marju Orho-Melander’s profile in Lund University’s research portal


EXODIAB: Excellence of Diabetes Research in Sweden

Link to EXODIAB’s page in Lund University’s research portal

EpiHealth: Epidemiology for Health

Link to the Epihealth website