Professor of Medicine and Pharmacology
Fax : (858) 534-0626
The sympathoadrenal efferent branch of the autonomic nervous system plays a key minute-to-minute role in regulation of blood pressure, and excessive sympathoadrenal activity is clearly implicated in the pathogenesis of hypertension, both primary (genetic, essential) and secondary (acquired), in both humans and experimental animals.
Our basic laboratory studies aim to understand the cellular processes of catecholamine biosynthesis, storage, and release.
Our clinical studies probe genetic determinants of hypertension, renal disease, and antihypertensive drug responses.
J Wessel, G Moratorio, F Rao, M Mahata, L Zhang, W Greene, BK Rana, BP Kennedy, S Khandrika, P Huang, EO Lillie, DW Smith, G Wen, BA Hamilton, MG Ziegler, JL Witztum, NJ Schork, GW Schmid-Schönbein, DT O'Connor. C reactive protein, an "intermediate phenotype" for inflammation: Human twin studies reveal heritability, association with blood pressure and the metabolic syndrome, and the influence of common polymorphism at catecholaminergic/b-adrenergic pathway loci. J Hypertension 25:329-43, 2007 (topic of editorial: J Hypertension 25:281-3, 2007).
TM Seasholtz, J Wessel, F Rao, BK Rana, S Khandrika, BP Kennedy, EO Lillie, MG Ziegler, DW Smith, NJ Schork, JH Brown, DT O'Connor. Rho kinase Polymorphism Influences Blood Pressure and Systemic Vascular Resistance in Human Twins: Role of Heredity. Hypertension 2006;47:937-47.
F Rao, J Wessel, G Wen, L Zhang, BK Rana, BP Kennedy, EO Lillie, RM Salem, BA Hamilton, DW Smith, N-H Holstein-Rathlou, MG Ziegler, NJ Schork, DT O'Connor. Renal albumin excretion, an "intermediate phenotype" for nephropathy: Human twin studies identify influences of heredity, environment, & the interactive role of polymorphism at adrenergic pathway loci. Hypertension 2007;49:1015-1031.
BK Rana, PA Insel, S Payne, K Abel, E Beutler, MG Ziegler, NJ Schork, DT O'Connor. Population-Based Sample Reveals Gene-Gender Interactions in Blood Pressure in White Americans. Hypert 49:96-106, '07.
EO Lillie, M Mahata, S Khandrika, F Rao, RA Bundey, G Wen, Y Chen, L Taupenot, DW Smith, SK Mahata, MG Ziegler, M Cockburn, NJ Schork, DT O'Connor. Heredity of endothelin secretion: Human twin studies reveal the influence of polymorphism at the chromogranin A locus, a novel determinant of endothelial function. Circulation 115:2282-2291, 2007.