Joseph Fomusi Ndisang

Joseph Fomusi Ndisang

Departments of Physiology, University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine,Canada

Title: Heme oxygenase is a novel strategy against cardio-renal complications in diabetic animals


Dr. Joseph Fomusi Ndisang is an Associate Professor in the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine, Department of Physiology. He received postdoctoral training in Physiology at the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine from 2000-2005. He obtained a PhD in Pharmacology & Toxicology from the University of Florence, Italy, 2000. He obtained a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from University of Florence, Italy in 1995. He has received several distinguished awards and distinctions including: (i) Fellow of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society (FCCS) in 2016,  (ii) Fellow of the American Heart Association (FAHA) in 2011; (iii) Fellow of the International College of Angiology (FICA) in 2007; (iv) Young Investigator Award by International College of Angiology (2007); (v) Young Investigator Award by the American Society of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics-Division for Drug Discovery, Development & Regulatory Affairs (2005); (vi) Young Investigator Award by the Society of Experimental Biology and Medicine (2005); (vii) Caroline tum Suden/Frances A Hellebrandt Professional Opportunity Award for Meritorious Research by the American Physiological Society (2005); and (viii) Recognition Award for Meritorious Research by a Young Investigator by the American Physiological Society (2004).

Top 5% of cited authors in journals of Biology and Biochemistry in 2011, by Thomson-Reuters.

Currently, Dr. Ndisang is an Editor for Frontiers in Bioscience (impact factor 3.8) and Executive Guest Editor for Current Medicinal Chemistry (impact factor 3.7) He has published more than 64-full length manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals and more than 80 abstracts. Dr. Ndisang has served as external PhD examiner for several universities in Canada, has given more than 30-invited talks, and has also served as peer-reviewer for several reputed journals and granting agencies in United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand and Poland.

Research Interest: His research is mainly focused on investigating the role of the heme oxygenase system in hypertension, diabetes (types-1 and -2), and obesity.



In diabetic subjects, dysfunctional insulin signaling and impaired glucose metabolism are associated with alterations and function of the heart and kidneys. We recently reported that upregulating heme-oxygenase (HO) potentiates insulin signaling and improve glucose metabolism in different animal models of type-1 and type-2 diabetes. Particularly, HO-inducers suppressed inflammatory/oxidative mediators such as cytokines (TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β), chemokines (MCP-1, MIP-1α), macrophage-M1 infiltration, NF-κB, AP-1, AP-2, cJNk and 8-isoprostane but potentiated insulin-signaling proteins (IRS-1, GLUT4, PI3K, PKB) and reduced insulin/glucose intolerance. These were associated with reduced cardiac lesions (hypertrophy, collagen deposition in cardiomyocytes and left ventricular longitudinal muscle-fiber thickness) and renal lesions (glomerulosclerosis, tubular necrosis, tubular vacuolization, interstitial macrophage infiltration and pro-fibrotic/extracellular-matrix proteins like collagen and fibronectin that deplete nephrin, a protein which forms the scaffolding of the podocyte slit-diaphragm for filtration). Correspondingly, improved cardiac hemodynamics and reduced proteinuria was observed suggesting improved cardiac and renal functions.

 These data suggest that HO may be explored in the search for novel and effective remedies against cardio-renal complications