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AHA to honor BIDMC investigator for groundbreaking Vascular Biology research

September 14, 2017

"As we had hypothesized, by inhibiting ROS, we were also inhibiting the PI3K-Akt pathway - as well as the production of nitric oxide by eNOS. We essentially came to the conclusion that if ROS is reduced too much, blood vessels contract instead of dilate, and adequate blood supply is unable to reach the heart."

"Dr. Abid has made an important discovery regarding the role of oxidative stress on VEGF signaling in the vasculature," notes Frank Sellke, MD, PhD, the Karl Karlson and Gloria Karlson Professor and Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Brown Medical School and Lifespan Hospitals. "This may have relevance in clinical medicine, especially as it applies to atherosclerotic heart disease and regenerative medicine."

According to Abid, follow-up studies will help guide investigators and clinicians as to whether or not to interfere with the high redox levels often present in coronary microvascular disease.

"As we have now learned, by lowering oxidant levels you could be paradoxically affecting redox-dependent signaling and vasodilation, and therefore, predisposing patients to an increased risk of myocardial ischemia. Going forward, we aim to understand the permissive role of ROS in maintaining coronary vasodilation," he adds. "We think this may have an impact on the development of therapeutic modalities for vascular diseases, and may help explain the apparent failure of antioxidants in large clinical trials, such as the HOPE trial."

The AHA's Werner Risau New Investigator Award in Vascular Biology was established in honor of Dr. Werner Risau, an investigator who formulated key concepts for the regulation of angiogenesis, challenged the prevailing dogmas about angiogenic factors, and proposed the now accepted hypothesis that several growth factors act sequentially to mediate vasculogenesis, angiogenesis, and vascular remodeling.

Source: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center