Patrik Rorsman studied medicine at Uppsala University, in his native Sweden, where, in 1986, he received his PhD from the Department of Medical Cell Biology. While formally enrolled as a research student at Uppsala University, he undertook additional training in the laboratory of Bert Sakmann (Nobel Prize 1991) at the Max Planck Institute for biophysical Chemistry, Gottingen, Germany. Since 2003 he serves as Professor of Diabetic Medicine at the University of Oxford. He has published more than 200 papers dealing with the function of the pancreatic islet cells and has performed pioneering studies on the cellular and molecular regulation of pancreatic islet hormone secretion, the mechanisms that underlie the ability of the different types of islet cell (beta-cells, but also alpha-cells and delta-cells) to sense changes in the plasma glucose concentration, the role ion channels play in these processes and how they become disrupted in diabetes mellitus.
He has provided evidence that dysregulation of glucagon and somatostatin secretion contributes to islet dysfunction in T2DM and, by examining the mode of action of sulphonyureas and glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) analogues on both alpha- and beta-cells, he has also made important contributions to our understanding of diabetes therapy.
His achievements have been recognised by several bodies and he has received numerous awards including the Minkowski Prize (in 1996) and the Albert Renold Prize (2013) of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes. He was elected Fellow of Royal Society (FRS) in 2014, is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Science (FMedSci) since 2010 and became a Member of Academia Europaea in 2006.