Research Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology and Nutrition
Laboratory research program focuses on the role of HDL and inflammation in the development and progression of cardiovascular disease. Specifically, the research looks at the role lipoproteins in the development and progression of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Two central projects revolved around HDL as a carrier of biomarkers of cardiovascular risk. This project focuses on development and application of quantitative proteomic methods to discovery of biomarkers of cardiovascular disease. Unlike whole plasma, HDL is a simple proteome of up to 100 proteins which is in the causal pathway of cardiovascular disease. Quantitative assessment of HDL proteome can therefore provide biomarkers for disease diagnosis as well as markers of therapeutic intervention efficacy. Second area of investigations centers on the role of inflammation in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease with particular focus on the role of HDL and its interactions with cells in the artherosclerotic lesions (macrophages, endothelial cells and smooth muscle cells). Inflammation is one of the hallmarks of atherosclerosis and is associated with major changes in the HDL protein composition, activation of cells in the arterial wall, and increased production of proteases in the atherosclerotic lesions. We are addressing questions of how the changes in HDL composition affect its anti-atherogenic properties and what is the role of proteolysis in the progression of atherosclerosis.