Dr. Zam Kassiri
Zamaneh Kassiri, MSc., PhD.
Associate Chair-Graduate Program
Dr. Zamaneh Kassiri completed her undergraduate degree (BSc, Hon., 1995) at the University of Toronto, and her MSc (1997) and PhD (2002) also at the University of Toronto in the laboratory of Dr. Peter Backx, where she studied muscle physiology and cardiac electrophysiology. For her post-doctoral training, she joined the laboratory of Dr. Rama Khokha at the Ontario Cancer Institute to study matrix biology and cardiac matrix remodeling. She joined the University of Alberta in August 2007 as Assistant Professor, and then as Associate Professor (2012) and Professor (2018). Dr. Kassiri’s research focuses on extracellular matrix (ECM) regulatory proteins, and ECM remodeling in heart and vascular pathologies.
During her training and as a new investigator, Dr. Kassiri was supported by the Heart & Stroke Foundation (Scholarship, Fellowship, New investigator Award). Her research has been funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Heart & Stroke Foundation (HSF), Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research/Alberta Innovates - Health Solutions (AHFMR/AI-HS), and Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). She has served as a reviewer on grant review panels (CIHR, HSF, American Heart Association) and several research journal editorial boards, and as a Guest Editor. She has received a number of awards and recognitions including the induction into the Royal Society of Canada, The College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists and Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in Cardiovascular extracellular matrix.
Professional Society Activities and Affiliations
Deputy Editor, American Journal of Physiology: Heart and Circulatory Physiology (Jan 2021- )
Associate Chair - Graduate studies, Department of Physiology, U Alberta (Sep 2020- )
Board Member, Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology (ATVB) (Nov 2020- )
Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in Cardiovascular Extracellular Matrix (2019-2026)
Professor, Department of Physiology, the University of Alberta (2018-)
Member, Canadian Vascular Network (2017- ).
Member, International Society for Heart Research (ISHR) (2017- )
Board member, Canadian Journal of Cardiology (2015- )
Member, American Physiological Society (APS) (2018- )
Member, Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology Society (ATVB) (2013- )
Member, Canadian Society of Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology (CSATVB) (2013- )
Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, the University of Alberta (2012-2018)
Heart & Stroke Foundation Maverick Researcher (2011)
Scholar, Alberta Innovates-Health Solution (AHFMR) (2010-2017)
Member, Canadian Cardiovascular Society (CCS) (2008-)
Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada New Investigator (2008-2013)
Assistant Professor, Department of Physiology, the University of Alberta (2008-2012)
Honors and Awards
Canada Research Chari, Tier 1, in Cardiovascular Extracellular Matrix (2019-2026)
Royal Society of Canada: College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists (2016-2023)
Canadian Cardiovascular Society (CCS) Young Investigator Award – Basic Science Category (2010-)
Richard Lewar/Heart & Stroke Foundation (TACTICS) Post-doctoral Fellowship (2005-2007)
Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada Post-doctoral Fellowship (2003-2005)
Mount Sinai Hospital/UHN Manuscript Competition (2002)
University of Toronto Open Scholarship (2001)
Gordon K. Moe Young Investigator Award –New York State (2000)
Institute of Medical Science (IMS) Merit Scholarship (2000)
Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada Doctoral Scholarship (1999-2002)
National and International Seminars and Invited Lectures
Charlottesville, VA, USA, June 2019 American Society for Matrix Biology: Fibroblast Workshop. Myocardial fibrosis and the differential role of Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinases (TIMPs).
Montreal Heart Institute, Montreal, QC, June 2019. Regional heterogeneity of the aortic ECM underlying thoracic vs. abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Orlando, Florida, USA, April 2019. Experimental Biology Meeting, Chair & Speaker. Symposium: Thoracic and Abdominal Aortic aneurysm: from Models and Mechanism to Clinical Trials and Therapy Updates. Title of talk: Differential ECM remodeling of the aorta in TAA versus AAA.
Boston, USA, July 2018 International Academy of Cordiology, 23rd World Congress on Heart Disease. Multi-faceted contribution of TIMPs to myocardial fibrosis.
Boston, USA, July 2018. International Academy of Cordiology, 23rd World Congress on Heart Disease. Critical role of the extracellular matrix in regional heterogeneity in the aorta and in aortic aneurysm.
Joint Central American & Caribbean Society of Cardiology, the Cuban Society of Cardiology and the International Academy of Cardiovascular Sciences. Havana, Cuba, June 18. The impact of age and mechanical unloading on ECM remodeling in dilated cardiomyopathy
Halifax, NB, May 2018. International Society for Heart Research (ISHR). Multifunctional role of the extracellular matrix in heart disease
Libin Cardiovascular Institute, University of Calgary. Calgary, AB, 2016. Aortic aneurysm: Thoracic versus Abdominal.
Cardiovascular Research Day, Centre for Cardiovascular Investigations, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, 2016. Diverse and novel functions of disintegrin and metalloproteinase-17 (ADAM17) in different types of heart disease.
The 10th Oriental Congress of Cardiology: The China International Forum on Cardiovascular Diseases. Shanghai, China, 2016. TIMPs and the multi-faceted functions of the extracellular matrix in heart disease.
Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China , 2016 Novel contribution of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and their inhibitors (TIMPs) to vascular diseases.
Canadian Cardiovascular Congress (CCC), Vancouver, BC, 2014. Contribution of extracellular matrix remodeling to aortic aneurysm development and progression.
The 2nd Cardiovascular Forum for Promoting Centres of Excellence and Young Investigators, Winnipeg, MA, 2014 Dynamic nature of the extracellular matrix and its contribution to heart disease.
Montreal Heart Institute Seminar Series, Montreal, QC, 2014.Thinking outside the cell: extracellular matrix remodeling in cardiac pathologies.
Edmonton, AB, 2014. Extracellular matrix remodeling in cardiovascular diseases – an overview. Cardiovascular Research Centre Seminar Series, "
Clinical and Experimental Cardiology Conference, Chicago, IL, USA, 2013. Role of TIMP3 in abdominal aortic aneurysm.
World Congress of Heart Disease, Toronto, ON, 2012. TIMPs and heart disease: a potential therapy.
International Society of Heart Research (ISHR), Banff, AB, 2012. Preventing the adverse remodeling of the extracellular matrix: role of TIMPs.