Thomas Kocarek

Thomas Kocarek


(313) 972-8025 (fax)

Thomas Kocarek

Middle name



Office 2126, Integrative Biosciences Building; 6135 Woodward Ave. Detroit, MI 48202

Office Phone

(313) 577-6580

Research Interests

Regulation of xenobiotic-metabolizing gene expression, Regulation of hepatic gene expression by isoprenoids and sterols

My research program is primarily focused on understanding how drugs and environmental agents affect liver function, particularly as related to xenobiotic and lipid metabolism. My goal is to understand the mechanisms by which drugs and environmental chemicals interact with the metabolic machinery of the hepatocyte to alter liver function in order to gain insight into how certain xenobiotics produce effects that can be exploited for the treatment of metabolic pathologies or alternatively how they might promote the development of these disorders. My current research is devoted primarily toward understanding the mechanisms by which drugs that interfere with cholesterol biosynthesis regulate cytochrome P450 (CYP) expression in primary cultured hepatocytes, with particular emphasis on how endogenous metabolites of the cholesterol biosynthetic pathway regulate the activities of nuclear receptors. Another major aspect of my research involves a longstanding collaboration with Dr. Melissa Runge-Morris to understand the regulation and function of the cytosolic sulfotransferases (SULTs). Like the P450s, the SULTs are regulated by a variety of xenobiotic and endogenous stimuli that modulate numerous signaling processes, including nuclear receptors. We are currently particularly interested in understanding the mechanisms that control expression of the SULTs during human development.


Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Selected publications

To view Dr. Kocarek's most recent publications, please visit PubMed at

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