Iris Jaffe, MD, PhD


Elisa Kent Mendelsohn Professor of Molecular Cardiology
Professor of Medicine



BA, Biochemistry, University of Pennsylvania
MD, PhD, Molecular Biology, University of Pennsylvania


Campus: Boston
Office: Tupper, 12th Floor
Laboratory: Tupper, 12th Floor

Contact Information

Office Phone: 617-636-0620
Lab Phone: 617-636-5093
E-mail   Send an e-mail


Research Web Site  Lab Research Page
Recent Publications  Abstract in PubMed

Graduate Programs

Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology


Research Synopsis

The steroid hormone aldosterone regulates blood pressure by interacting with its receptor, the Mineralocorticoid Receptor (MR) in the kidney. The MR is a ligand-activated transcription factor with clinically available inhibitors that prevent heart attacks, strokes, and cardiovascular mortality in human clinical trials. Our lab is investigating the molecular mechanisms for the protective effects of MR-antagonist drugs using in vitro, cell culture, and state-of-the art transgenic mouse models of vascular disease. We have recently demonstrated that MRs are expressed and regulate gene transcription in vascular cells and that the hormone aldosterone promotes vascular injury and atherosclerosis in mouse models of vascular disease. Our overall hypothesis is that aldosterone acts directly on mineralocorticoid receptors in the blood vessel wall to modulate gene expression in the vessel thereby promoting vascular disease. We have identified the aldosterone-regulated vascular transcriptome and we are exploring the genes, signaling pathways, and vascular functions regulated by aldosterone and MR in the vasculature. These studies are expected to explain the vascular protective effects of MR-antagonist drugs and to identify new drug targets to prevent heart attack and strokes in humans.


Lab Members

Lauren Biwer, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail 
Seung Kyum Kim, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail 
Qing Lu, Research Associate Send an e-mail 
Joshua Man, MD, PhD Student in Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology  Send an e-mail Lab Research Page
Elizabeth Moss, MD, PhD Student in Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology  Send an e-mail Lab Research Page

Apply to the Sackler School


The priority application deadlines are as follows:

December 1: Basic Science Division PhD Programs

February 15: Building Diversity in Biomedical Sciences

March 31: Post-Baccalaureate Research Program

May 1: Clinical & Translational Science, MS in Pharmacology & Drug Development