Pharmaceutical Sciences
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Paul Jurasz

Professor
pharmacology
University of Alberta
Canada

Biography

2005-2008   Postdoctoral Fellow Terrance Donnelly Vascular Biology Research Labs Department of Cardiology St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, Ontario Supervisor: Dr. Duncan J. Stewart              2002-2005  Postdoctoral Fellow Institute of Molecular Medicine for the Prevention of Human Diseases Department of Integrative Biology and Pharmacology University of Texas Health Sciences Center-Houston  Houston, Texas, USA Supervisor: Dr. Marek Radomski   1998- 2002 PhD Department of Pharmacology University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada Supervisor: Dr. Marek Radomski   1994-1998 BSc with Distinction  University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada

Research Interest

Platelets are cell fragments physiologically known for maintaining hemostasis and pathologically for forming thrombi that occlude arteries and veins. These traditional roles of platelets have been known since the late 19th century. However, recent investigations from several laboratories around the world have demonstrated that platelets also play an important role regulating angiogenesis (new blood vessel growth). Platelets constitutively generate the potent angiogenesis inhibitor angiostatin as they circulate. In addition, they contain abundant pro- and anti-angiogenic mediators such as vascular endothelial growth and thrombospondin, which upon release from platelets granules help regulate new blood vessel growth.  In my laboratory, in addition to studying the traditional roles of platelets, we study the pharmacological regulation of platelet-derived angiogenesis mediators in an attempt to inhibit growth of blood vessels to tumors and to promote therapeutic blood vessel growth for cardiovascular disease. Specifically, we are investigating the role of platelet-derived angiostatin plays in limiting angiogenesis, and how its production is regulated by serine and matrix metalloproteinases. Further, we are interested in how nitric oxide and protein kinase C signaling pathways influence the release of angiogenesis mediators from platelets. Finally, we are exploring how these platelet-derived angiogenesis mediators influence endothelial cell growth, migration, and ability to form capillaries.

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