Dr. Michael McIntosh

Keker Excellence Professor
Department of Nutrition
School of Health & Human Sciences

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Excellence Professor McIntosh has served UNCG for 24 years. He has mentored 10 doctoral students, 16 masters’ students, and 23 undergraduate research assistants. Michael‘s research group has published 59 peer-reviewed papers, 10 book chapters, and 100 abstracts. He and his students have given 100 presentations of their research at national or international meetings. Dr. McIntosh’s research team has been awarded approximately 4.5 million dollars in grants to support their research. His students have received local, state, and national awards for their research in the form of fellowships, grant proposals, research competitions, and travel scholarships. He is an active member of numerous professional organizations and is currently a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry. Michael has served on NIH study sections and been an ad-hoc reviewer for grants for the USDA and the American Diabetes Association and for multiple journals. He has taught 11 different didactic courses and 10 different research-related courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Michael is consistently ranked as one of the top teachers in his department, has won several UNCG teaching awards, including the North Carolina Board of Governor’s Teaching Excellence Award, and is a recipient of the USDA National Teaching Award for the southern region of the U.S.

During his career, Dr. McIntosh’s group has made significant contributions to our current understanding of how certain foods or dietary compounds, rather than prescription drugs, combat obesity and its associated diseases including type 2 diabetes. During the past two years, his research group has demonstrated 1) the mechanism by which an isomer of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) decreases the ability of human fat cells to synthesize lipids, thereby reducing fat cell size and body fat, 2) that an extract from California table grapes and one of its most abundant compounds (i.e., quercetin), reduce chronic inflammation and insulin resistance in human fat and immune cells, or in high fat fed mice, and 3) that two compounds (i.e., alpha and gamma mangostin) in mangosteen, an Asian fruit used as a traditional medicine, prevent inflammation and insulin resistance in human fat and immune cells. Although these studies need to be recapitulated in overweight and obese humans to determine their physiological significance and identify potential side effects, they offer hope for dietary solutions to preventing or treating obesity and its metabolic complications. Most importantly, students mentored by Dr. McIntosh are now becoming part of the next generation of successful nutrition educators and productive research scientists in the U.S. and abroad. Together they will help improve the health and well-being of the human race.

2016 Call for Nominations

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What is the O. Max Gardner Award?

The UNC System Seal This is the highest faculty honor awarded by the UNC Board of Governors and has been given annually since 1949. Each of the UNC universities may nominate one faculty member. The Gardner Award was established by Gardner's will to recognize faculty who have "made the greatest contributions to the welfare of the human race." Those chosen in the past have been persons who have made notable contributions of national or international scale. It is the only award for which all faculty members of the all UNC campuses are eligible.

Recipients are nominated by their chancellors and selected by the Board of Governors. The recipient is given a cash award. The nominee from each school is due to the Board of Governors Committee on the Oliver Max Gardner Award in December each year and the award is presented in April as part of the Board of Governors meeting.


Oliver Max GardnerOliver Max Gardner (22 March 1882 -- 6 February 1947) was the Democratic governor of the U.S. state of North Carolina from 1929 to 1933. Prior to becoming Governor, Gardner was elected as a state senator from Cleveland County, North Carolina and as Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina (1917-1921).

We invite you to learn more about this great man of North Carolina by exploring the Governor O. Max Gardner site.

1949 Louise B. Alexander Education, Political Science & History
1954 Franklin H. McNutt Education
1956 Mereb E. Mossman Sociology
1960 Richard N. Current History (Lincoln Scholar & author)
1962 Randall Jarrell Literature (poetry), English
1966 Lois Edinger Education
1971 Naomi G. Albanese Home Economics
1974 Mary Elizabeth Keister Early Childhood Education
1976 Eloise Rallings Lewis Nursing
1979 Richard Bardolph History
1986 Fred Chappell Literature
1996 Vira Rodgers Kivett Gerontology, Human Development & Family Studies