Michael Puglisi

Assistant Professor



Research Interests

I have a varied background, with a research background in sports nutrition, lipoprotein metabolism, and inflammation and insulin resistance. I have worked in public health since 2011, starting in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) for 6 years before returning to UConn, where I am currently serving as Coordinator of the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program for the state of Connecticut, as well as the SNAP-Ed Program in Nutritional Sciences.

My current research focuses on improving food security and physical activity in low-income populations, with recent efforts on increasing the use of trails in Connecticut as part of the Multi-Use Trail Research Team. As an InCHIP affiliate, I am planning on conducting research to increase physical activity in low-income populations EFNEP and SNAP-Ed, with a focus on the built environment and the use of technology to track and reinforce physical activity.

My current research is aligned with InCHIP’s Mission to apply evidence-based practices in the community to promote behavioral change. Given that EFNEP and SNAP-Ed work with diverse, low-income populations, my research will focus on improving diet and physical activity behaviors in communities with significant health disparities.


PhD, University of Connecticut, 2008
MS, Virginia Tech, 2002

Recent Publications

Zaleski A, Taylor B, Armstrong B, Puglisi M, Clarkson, P, Chipkin S, White CM, Thompson PD, Pescatello LS. Associations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D with the blood pressure response to maximal exercise among healthy adults. International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. 2018 (epub ahead of print).

Orr JS, Puglisi MJ, Ellacott KL, Lumeng CN, Wasserman DH, Hasty AH. Toll-like receptor 4 deficiency promotes the alternative activation of adipose tissue macrophages. Diabetes. 2012;61(11):2718-27.

Puglisi MJ, Hasty AH, Saraswathi V. The role of adipose tissue in mediating the beneficial effects to dietary fish oil. J Nutr Biochem. 2011;22(2):101-108.

Forsythe CE, Phinney SD, Feinman RD, Volk BM, Freidenreich D, Quann E, Ballard K, Puglisi MJ, Maresh CM, Kraemer WJ, Bibus DM, Fernandez ML, Volek JS. Limited effect of dietary saturated fat on plasma saturated fat in the context of a low carbohydrate diet. Lipids. 2010:45(10):947-62.

Mutungi G, Waters D, Ratliff J, Puglisi MJ, Clark RM, Volek JS, Fernandez ML. Eggs distinctly modulate plasma carotenoid and lipoprotein subclasses in adult men following a carbohydrate-restricted diet. J Nutr Biochem. 2010;21(4):261-267.

Ratliff J, Leite JO, de Ogburn R, Puglisi MJ, VanHeest J, Fernandez ML. Consuming eggs for breakfast influences plasma glucose and ghrelin, while reducing energy intake during the next 24 hours in adult men. Nutr Res. 2010: 30(2):96-103.

Ata SM, Vaishnav U, Puglisi M, Lofgren IE, Wood RJ, Volek JS, Fernandez ML. Macronutrient composition and increased physical activity modulate plasma adipokines and appetite hormones during a weight loss intervention. J Womens Health. 2010;19(1):139-45.

Leite JO, Vaishnav U, Puglisi MJ, Fraser H, Trias J, Fernandez ML. A-002 (Varespladib), a phospholipase A2 Inhibitor, reduces atherosclerosis in guinea pigs. BMC Cardiovasc Disord. 2009;17;9(1):7.

Mutungi G, Ratliff J, Puglisi MJ, Volek JS, Fernandez ML. Carbohydrate restriction (with or without additional dietary cholesterol provided by eggs) reduces insulin resistance and plasma leptin without modifying appetite hormones in adult men. Nutr Res. 2009;29(4):262-8.

Puglisi MJ, Mutungi G, Brun PJ, McGrane MM, Labonte C, Volek JS, Fernandez ML. Raisins and walking alter appetite hormones and plasma lipids by modifications in lipoprotein metabolism and up-regulation of the low-density lipoprotein receptor. Metabolism. 2009;58:120-128.

Fragala MS, Kraemer WJ, Volek JS, Maresh CM, Puglisi MJ, Vingren JL, Ho JY, Hatfield DL, Spiering BA, Forsythe CE, Thomas GA, Quann EE, Anderson JM, Hesslink RL Jr. Influences of a dietary supplement in combination with an exercise and diet regimen on adipocytokines and adiposity in women who are overweight. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2009;105(5):665-72.

Coenen KR, Gruen ML, Lee-Young RS, Puglisi MJ, Wasserman DH, Hasty AH. Impact of macrophage toll-like receptor 4 deficiency on macrophage infiltration into adipose tissue and the artery wall in mice. Diabetologia. 2009;52(2):318-28.

Gutierrez DA, Puglisi MJ, Hasty AH. Impact of increased adipose tissue mass on inflammation, insulin resistance and dyslipidemia. Curr Diabetes Reports. 2009;9(1):26-32.

Volek JS, Phinney SD, Forsythe CE, Quann EE, Wood RJ, Puglisi MJ, Kraemer WJ, Bibus DM,
Fernandez ML, Feinman RD. Carbohydrate restriction has a more favorable impact on the metabolic syndrome than a low fat diet. Lipids. 2009;44(4):297-309.

Mutungi G, Ratliff JC, Puglisi MJ, Torres-Gonzalez M, Vaishnav U, Leite JO, Quann EE, Volek JS, Fernandez ML. Dietary cholesterol from eggs increases plasma HDL cholesterol in overweight men consuming a carbohydrate-restricted diet. J Nutr. 2008;138(2):272-276.

Contact Information
Phone(860) 486-1198
Mailing Address3624 Horsebarn Rd. Ext., U-4017 303D Manchester, CT 06040 United States