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Congratulations to Dr. Adam Straub who was recently awarded a new NHLBI R01!  As co-PI with former VMI colleague Dr. Eric Kelley, Dr. Straub has been awarded annual direct costs of over $350,000 for his grant titled, “Role of Xanthine Oxidase in Heme-induced Vascular Dysfunction.” This proposal was submitted in response to the competitive funding opportunity titled NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01) under funding opportunity number PA-20-185.

Xanthine oxidase (XO) activity is significantly increased in a number of vascular diseases including hypertension, sepsis, and sickle cell disease as well as a substantive contributor to poor outcomes allied to cardiovascular surgery and transplantation. Associated with an elevation in XO activity is circulating heme. This grant will test if XO has protective, rather than a deleterious, role in vascular protection through its ability to degrade heme from XO-derived reactive oxygen species. Completion of this study will fill a major gap in our understanding XO’s ability to regulate intravascular heme and may lead to therapeutic strategies to improve cardiovascular health.