National Institute of Aging
Title: The potential role of red blood cells in amyloid toxicity and Alzheimer's disease
Dr. Joseph M. Rifkind received his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Columbia University in 1966. He obtained postdoctoral training in protein chemistry at the University of Minnesota and joined the Gerontology Research Center of what was then part of National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) in1968. He is the chief of the Molecular Dynamics Section of Biomedical Research Center, USA. He is a member of the American Chemical Society, the Biophysical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Gerontological Society of America, the International EPR (ESR) Society, and the International Society on Oxygen Transport to Tissue. His resear interest is on the Molecular Dynamics Section (MDS) focuses on the interplay between structure and dynamics and how these influence biological function. The section is presently involved in studying the structural and dynamic factors in hemoglobin which regulate the binding of oxygen as well as autoxidation with its associated release of superoxide. The finding that autoxidation of hemoglobin is appreciably enhanced at reduced oxygen pressures, has lead to the proposal of a novel method for producing oxyradicals under hypoxic conditions. Studies are being performed on erythrocytes, interaction of erythrocytes with other tissues and with whole animals to determine to what extent this mechanism contributes to the pathophysiology of aging.