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Valerian Kagan

Valerian Kagan

Program: Genome Stability 333 CLMCS
100 Technology Drive
Pittsburgh PA

Dr. Valerian E. Kagan is one of the world’s recognized leaders and one of the most prominent authorities in the field of Free Radical Biology and Medicine. Internationally known for his profound interdisciplinary studies of oxidative stress, antioxidants, tissue, and cell acute and chronic injury, he has founded a new field of research “Oxidative Lipidomics” and demonstrated its research power in investigations of cell death mechanisms. Free radicals, lipid peroxidation and oxidative stress have been long associated with tissue and cell damage through yet not well characterized specific mechanisms. The incompleteness of this knowledge is a stumbling block in discovery, development and effective implementation of antioxidant preventive and therapeutic strategies. The research performed by Dr. Kagan is a breakthrough in the field as it uncovers specific pathways through which enzymes of oxidative metabolism participate in the production of specific oxygenated lipid molecules that act as signals triggering cell death program as well as mechanisms involved in clearance of damaged or dead cells. Understanding these key signaling pathways is of prime importance for obtaining new insights into mechanisms of radiation injury, inflammation, and immune responses. Based on the discoveries of Dr. Kagan’s lab mechanism-based approaches to creation of novel generations of preventive, protective and mitigating small molecule drugs have been developed that are being tested in a number of conditions.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • antioxidant activity of pulmonary epithelial and endothelial proteins
  • Free radical biochemistry
  • nitric oxide (NO) interactions with cellular components
  • phospholipid signaling in cell death pathways
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