[Grand Rounds] Food as Innate Drug Source: Novel Strategies for Drug Development in the Era of Big Data

Event Date: May 4th, 2021

Joseph Loscalzo, MD, PhD

[Grand Rounds] Food as Innate Drug Source: Novel Strategies for Drug Development in the Era of Big Data

Contemporary drug development largely focuses on the use of small molecules that are synthesized de novo. The food supply contains many thousands of organic compounds, the great majority of which have not been characterized in terms of their biological effects. Their potential actions include drug-like behaviors, i.e., they can be used to improve normal cellular or organismal function in a disease setting. Using the tools of network medicine, Dr. Loscalzo discussed new approaches to disease diagnosis and drug target discovery, and demonstrated how the latter can be applied to this rich pool of food-based compounds with the potential for the discovery of naturally occurring drugs.


[Paper] The unmapped chemical complexity of our diet.

Event Details:

Date/Time: Tuesday, May 4th | 8:00am – 9:00am
Cost: Free. CME credit available.
If you want to request CME credit for virtual participation, to be eligible, send an email between 8:00-8:30am on Tuesday, May 4th with your full name, degree and organization to [email protected]

Submit questions via the chat function on Zoom.
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Presenter: Joseph Loscalzo, MD, PhD, Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine, Soma Weiss, MD, Distinguished Chair in Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Chairman, Department of Medicine
Physician-in-Chief, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Dr. Joseph Loscalzo is Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine, and Soma Weiss, M.D., Distinguished Chair in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Chairman of the Department of Medicine, and Physician-in-Chief at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Loscalzo received his A.B. degree, summa cum laude, his Ph.D. in biochemistry, and his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. His clinical training was completed at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, where he served as Resident and Chief Resident in medicine and Fellow in cardiovascular medicine.

After completing his training, Dr. Loscalzo joined the Harvard faculty and staff at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 1984. He rose to the rank of Associate Professor of Medicine, Chief of Cardiology at the West Roxbury Veterans Administration Medical Center, and Director of the Center for Research in Thrombolysis at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He joined the faculty of Boston University in 1994, first as Chief of Cardiology and, in 1997, Wade Professor and Chair of Medicine, Professor of Biochemistry, and Director of the Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute. He returned to Harvard and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2005.

Dr. Loscalzo is recognized as an outstanding cardiovascular scientist, clinician, and teacher. He has received many awards, including the Clinician-Scientist Award, the Distinguished Scientist Award, the Research Achievement Award, the Paul Dudley White Award and the Gold Heart Award from the American Heart Association; a Research Career Development Award, a Specialized Center of Research in Ischemic Heart Disease Award, and a MERIT Award from the National Institutes of Health; the George W. Thorn Award for Excellence in Teaching at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Educator of the Year Award in Clinical Medicine from Boston University, and the William Silen Lifetime Achievement in Mentorship Award from Harvard Medical School; the Glaxo Cardiovascular Research Award, the Rector’s Silver Medal from the University of Rome, Sapienza, and the Outstanding Investigator Prize from the International Society for Heart Research; election to fellowship in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and election to the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, and the National Academy of Medicine. Castle Connolly has named him one of America’s Top Doctors. He served as an associate editor of the New England Journal of Medicine for nine years, Chair of the Cardiovascular Board of the American Board of Internal Medicine, Chair of the Research Committee of the American Heart Association, Chair of the Scientific Board of the Stanley J. Sarnoff Society of Fellows for Research in the Cardiovascular Sciences, and Chair of the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health. He is a former member of the Advisory Council of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and a former member of the Council of Councils of the National Institutes of Health. He is currently Director of the NIH-funded Center for Accelerated Innovation (the Boston Biomedical Innovation Center), and of the NIH-funded Harvard Undiagnosed Disease Network program. He is also former Editor-in-Chief of Circulation, currently Editor-at-Large of the New England Journal of Medicine, and a current senior editor of Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine.

Dr. Loscalzo has been a visiting professor at many institutions, holds three honorary degrees, has authored or co-authored over 1,100 scientific publications, has authored or edited 51 books, and holds 32 patents for his work in the field of nitric oxide, redox biology, and vascular biology. He is also the recipient of many grants from the NIH and industry for his work in the areas of vascular biology, thrombosis, atherosclerosis, and, more recently, systems biology over the past thirty years. His most recent work has established the field of network medicine, a paradigm-changing discipline that seeks to re-define disease and therapeutics from an integrated perspective using systems biology and network science.