Dr. Jaycob D. Warfel is an Assistant Professor in the Biology Department at CBU. His expertise is in nucleic acid binding proteins, and he has focused on the way in which these cellular machines regulate processes such as bacterial DNA repair and mammalian cellular metabolism. Through engaging his students in biological research and education, Dr. Warfel strives to instruct in the importance of the Lasallian values of faith, service, and community.


  • NIDDK T32 Postdoctoral Fellow – Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
  • PhD – Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
  • BS – Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
  • AS – Parkland College, Champaign, IL

Publications and Research Focus

  • Metabolic flexibility describes the degree to which a biological system can switch between different fuels. A decreased ability to switch between the usage of fats and carbohydrates is often seen in patients with obesity and type 2 diabetes. Dr. Warfel’s laboratory has used data from translational studies involving models of decreased metabolic flexibility in mice and humans to identify important molecular controls of substrate sensing and utilization.

    Dr. Warfel’s research has shown that proper control of cellular RNA levels by the RNA-binding protein HuR ensures the maintenance of metabolic flexibility in mouse and human skeletal muscle by promoting the oxidation of fats. Dr. Warfel’s current focus is determining whether female mammals can bypass HuR-controlled metabolism through increased cycling of the ovarian hormone estrogen.

    Selected Publications
    • Warfel, J.D., Elks, C.M., Bayless, D.S., Vandanmagsar, B., Stone, A.C., Velasquez, S. E., Olivares-Nazar, P., Noland, R. C., Ghosh, S., and Mynatt, R. L.(2023) Rats lacking Ucp1 present a novel translational tool for the investigation of thermogenic adaptation during cold challenge, Acta Physiol (Oxf). 238(1):e13935
    • Stone, A. C., Noland, R. C., Mynatt, R. L., Velasquez, S. E., Bayless, D. S., Ravussin, E., and Warfel, J. D. (2021) Female mice are protected from metabolic decline associated with lack of skeletal muscle HuR, Biology (Basel) 10(6):543.
    • Mynatt, R.L., Noland, R.C., Elks, C.M., Vandanmagsar, B., Bayless, D.S., Stone, A.C., Ghosh, S., Ravussin, E., and Warfel, J.D. (2019) The RNA binding protein HuR influences skeletal muscle metabolic flexibility in rodents and humans. Metabolism: clinical and experimental, 97:40-49.
    • Wicks, S. E., Vandanmagsar, B., Haynie, K. R., Fuller, S. E., Warfel, J. D., Stephens, J. M., Wang, M., Han, X., Zhang, J., Noland, R. C., and Mynatt, R. L. (2015) Impaired mitochondrial fat oxidation induces adaptive remodeling of muscle metabolism, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 112, E3300-3309.
    • Warfel, J. D., and LiCata, V. J. (2015) Enhanced DNA binding affinity of RecA protein from Deinococcus radiodurans, DNA Repair (Amst) 31, 91-96.

    A complete list of Dr. Warfel’s Publications can be found at:

    Presentations (CBU only)
    • Chaney, M.K., Velasquez, S. E., Labarre, E. B., Ghosh, S., and Warfel, J.D. (Poster Presentation) Male mice lacking HuR in skeletal muscle show enhanced glucose uptake at a young age. (November, 2023) ULL Undergraduate Research Conference 2023, Lafayette, LA
    • Warfel, J.D. (Invited Talk) The RNA Binding Protein HuR Regulates Metabolic Flexibility in Skeletal Muscle. (August, 2023) Ohio University Invited Talk, Host Cory Baumann, PhD, Athens, OH

    Funding Support
    • NIH 1 R03 DK133616-01; Activated ERα as Compensation for HuR Controlled Lipid Oxidation in Skeletal Muscle
    (09/01/23 – 08/31/25); Warfel, Jaycob (PI); $75,000/Year Direct Cost
    • NIH 1 K01 DK116914-01; HuR as a Regulator of Skeletal Muscle Metabolism (07/01/19 – 06/30/24); Warfel, Jaycob (PI); $104,575/Year Direct Cost
    • NIH 1 P30 GM118430-01; Pennington Biomedical Research Center COBRE Pilot and Feasibility Grant; Overcoming Metabolic Inflexibility in and HuR Depleted State
    (01/01/20 – 07/01/21); Warfel, Jaycob (PI); $34,000 Direct Cost
    • NIH 1 P30 DK072476-01; Pennington Biomedical Research Center NORC Pilot and Feasibility Grant; Transcriptome Changes in Skeletal Muscle During HuR Inhibition (01/01/18 – 01/01/19); Warfel, Jaycob (PI); $37,500 Direct Cost