Jonathan S. Stamler, MD

Jonathan Stamler, MD

Jonathan S. Stamler, M.D. is an internationally renowned physician-scientist, recognized for the discovery of protein S-nitrosylation, a fundamental mechanism for controlling protein function that operates in all cell types and tissues from bacteria to humans. Dr. Stamler’s elucidation of the cellular mechanisms of action of S-nitrosylation has provided new insights into multiple aspects of mammalian physiology, including the regulation of cardiac, skeletal muscle, and airway contractility, and shown that dysregulated S-nitrosylation is commonly associated with disease, ranging from heart disorders to neurological syndromes and cancer. Particularly notable is his discovery of red blood cell-mediated vasodilation, which revealed the essential role of NO carried by hemoglobin as required for tissue oxygenation in the respiratory cycle, thereby redefining the respiratory cycle as a 3-gas system: O2/NO/CO2. Dr. Stamler also discovered endogenous S-nitrosylation in bacteria, yeast and worms, complementing discoveries in plants, which demonstrated phylogenetic conservation. The paradigm under which S-nitrosylation regulates proteins in all functional classes to convey a ubiquitous influence from microbes to man has changed the way people think about signaling by small gaseous messengers, reshaped NO/redox biology, and broadly impacted the biological and biomedical sciences.

Dr. Stamler’s laboratory also is known for groundbreaking work on hemoglobins in invertebrates and microbes, including the discovery of novel enzymatic functions of hemoglobins that provide protection against nitric oxide in lower organisms. He also identified the molecular mechanism of nitroglycerin bioactivation and tolerance.

Dr. Stamler is a graduate of Brandeis University and received his medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He completed his internship, residency and fellowships in cardiovascular and pulmonary medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He was a member of the faculty at Harvard University before spending sixteen years at Duke University, including as an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

In 2010, Dr. Stamler relocated to Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, where he holds the Robert S. and Sylvia K. Reitman Family Foundation Distinguished Chair of Cardiovascular Innovation, is a Professor of Medicine and of Biochemistry, and serves as Director of the Institute for Transformative Molecular Medicine as well as President of the Harrington Discovery Institute, which he co-founded.

Dr. Stamler has published more than 300 original scientific papers and edited two books. He has co-founded nine biotechnology companies and licensed two additional programs to major pharmaceutical companies, and he holds more than 125 patents and patent applications. He has received numerous awards and prizes, including recognition by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation for being among the “Top Innovators in America” and by the American Heart Association as a “Distinguished Scientist.” His work has been covered in numerous lay publications, from the front page of the New York Times and Time magazine, to books on the history of science and studies of outlier-innovators.

The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development

Breakthrough Medicine