Accelerating Breakthrough Discoveries into Medicines

Richard N. Kitsis, MD

Richard N. Kitsis, MD

Richard N. Kitsis, MD, is Director of the newly endowed Wilf Family Cardiovascular Research Institute at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, NY and the Dr. Gerald and Myra Dorros Chair in Cardiovascular Disease. He also is a professor in the departments of medicine and cell biology.

His leads an internationally recognized research program focused on understanding fundamental molecular mechanisms of cell death and their roles in heart disease and cancer. His major goals are to understand the mechanistic connections that link various cell death programs – in particular apoptosis and necrosis – and to translate an understanding of cell death mechanisms into novel therapies for heart disease. Dr. Kitsis’ lab is working on developing a novel small molecule drug to reduce cardiomyocyte necrosis and apoptosis during acute myocardial infarction. The drug is projected to synergize with current therapies that reduce myocardial oxygen demand and restore perfusion. The drug may also delay infarct development long enough to extend the window for successful reperfusion therapy. This work will create a first-in-class drug to limit infarct size, reduce mortality and preserve quality of life.

Dr. Kitsis earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., and his MD from the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine. His careers spans diverse areas including research, teaching, clinical care, the application of advanced technologies and the improvement of healthcare delivery.

Dr. Kitsis previously served as Chief of Cardiology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, New York

Harrington Project

The Harrington Discovery Institute is the nonprofit arm of the Harrington Project for Discovery & Development, an international initiative supporting breakthrough research by physician-scientists. The Project is a new and powerful approach to address some of the challenges hindering advancement of medicine today.

The Harrington Grant is an important part of the overall pharmaceutical research initiative created by The Harrington Project.