Exercise, Diet, Genitourinary, & Endocrinology (EDGE) Research Laboratory

Lab team stands in front of NHANES Mobile Examination Center

Above: the EDGE lab group and faculty of the KU Department of Dietetics and Nutrition toured the NHANES Mobile Examination Center during its visit to Johnson County, Kan. last August.

The Exercise, Diet, Genitourinary, & Endocrinology (EDGE) Research Laboratory conducts innovative, cutting "EDGE" medical nutrition science research. Our research seeks answers to practical, relevant and patient-centered health concerns involving conditions such as bladder cancer, prostate cancer, hypothyroidism, and polycystic kidney disease.

Clinical Services

Once a month, our dietitians provide diet and lifestyle counseling to men at risk for primary or secondary prostate cancer. Dietitians tailor a personalized recommendation based on each patient’s 24-hour recall to illustrate what lifestyle changes would be the easiest for the patient to incorporate. Learn more

Current Research Projects

The EDGE lab is actively engaged in several significant research projects and aims to create discoveries to help the health of our community. Scientists are studying radical cystectomy surgery outcomes in bladder cancer patients and the role of soy in those with subclinical hypothyroidism. A third effort explores the dietary factors in the progression of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease. Learn more

Principal Investigator


Jill Hamilton-Reeves

The EDGE lab is led by Jill Hamilton-Reeves, PhD, RD, LD, a registered and licensed dietitian with doctoral training in translational and clinical nutrition science. See her bio


Co-investigators, Nutrition and Bladder Cancer

Jeffrey HolzbeierleinJeffrey Holzbeierlein, MD 
John W. Weigel Distinguished Professor of Urology
KU School of Medicine

Thomas YankeeThomas Yankee, PharmD, PhD
Associate Professor
KU School of Medicine

Co-investigators, Soy and Subclinical Hypothyroidism

Leland GravesLeland Graves, III, MD
Professor, KU School of Medicine Director, Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology and Genetics

Leigh WagnerLeigh Wagner, MS, RD
Doctoral student
Dietitian in Integrative Medicine

Co-investigators, Diet and Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease

Jared GranthamJared Grantham, MD
University Distinguished Professor
Kidney Institute – Director Emeritus

Deb SullivanDebra Sullivan, PhD, RD
Chair, KU Department of Dietetics and Nutrition
Midwest Dairy Council Professor in Clinical Nutrition

Jacob TaylorJacob Taylor, MS, RD, LD
Doctoral student


Last modified: Feb 20, 2014

See what the EDGE lab offers and meet some of our current and former students.

Want to participate in a clinical trial?
Please contact Misty Bechtel 913-945-5037

Amy Schleper, MS, RD, LD, of the EDGE lab will give a poster presentation of her master's thesis work, “Weight management to reduce prostate cancer risk: a survey of men's needs and interests,” at the 2014 International Cancer Education Conference in October.

Preliminary data from the EDGE lab's nutrition and bladder cancer study will be presented this fall at the 2014 South Central Section of the American Urological Association!

The EDGE lab's Jacob Taylor won the first annual Nutrition Translation poster competition at Experimental Biology 2014 in San Diego with his poster presentation, "A new diet for autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease." (Recognition on page 18 in the June issue of Nutrition Notes.)

Misty Bechtel, the EDGE lab’s new lead research assistant, has been published in the Biochimica et Biophysica Acta for her work with distinguished professors, Drs. Eli Michaelis and Mary Michaelis. We are so proud of her work!

EDGE Alum Published

Jill Hamilton-Reeves with Bethany Diggett

A manuscript by Bethany Diggett, alumna of the EDGE lab, has been published in the Journal of Cancer Education. By evaluating attitudes and educational needs of men at high-risk for prostate cancer, her group's work inspired the role of the dietitian in the Burns & McDonnell High-Risk Prostate Cancer Prevention Program at the KU Cancer Center.

Honors for EDGE lab team member

Jacob Taylor

The EDGE lab's own Jacob Taylor received a special invitation to speak at the Annual Dialysis Conference in Atlanta, February 2014. And in June 2013, Taylor was awarded a $5,000 Abbott Nutrition Research Grant by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Review Board. Great job, Jacob!