Nihal Ahmad, PhD

Professor and Associate Vice Chair for Research

Contact: Dermatology Research Laboratories

Phone: 608-263-4195 · 

Nihal Ahmad Head Shot

BS (Chemistry, Botany and Zoology) 1982; University of Lucknow, India.
MS (Chemistry) 1984; Lucknow University, India
Ph.D. (Chemistry) 1989; Lucknow University, India

1989-1993: Sythetic and Bio-organic Chemistry
1993-1995: Metal Toxicity, Oxidative Stress
1993-1995: Oxidative Stress, Metal Toxicity and Environmental Toxicity
1996-1998: Cancer Chemoprevention and Photodynamic Therapy   

Research Summary
The long-term goal of Ahmad laboratory is to be able to make an impact on the quality of human life through cutting-edge biomedical research. To achieve this goal, we want to define the critical molecular and biochemical events in the process of cancer development that will help us identify the targets for disease management. Using this knowledge, we want to be able to develop new approaches and strategies, which could ultimately be translated from the bench to the bedside, for the prevention and/or treatment of cancer. Thus, our research is focused on two broad and complimentary research areas; 1) cancer biology, and 2) prevention and experimental therapeutics of cancer.

Curriculum Vitae
PubMed Publications

A major focus of Ahmad laboratory is to study the molecular mechanisms/signal transduction pathways involved in the development and progression of cancer. We are studying the role and functional significance of mitotic regulators in cancer development and progression. The regulators of mitosis include the genes that encode several kinases, including the polo-like kinase (Plk) family of serine/threonine kinases. In another project, we are also trying to understand the role of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, NAD+-dependent deacetylases, Sirtuin family proteins in the development and/or progression of cancer. The second major focus of Ahmad laboratory is to define the cancer chemopreventive/therapeutic potential of a variety of agents viz. resveratrol (a phytoalexin antioxidant found in grapes, nuts, berries and red wine), melatonin (the chief secretory product of the pineal gland and a known antioxidant), vitamin E (the major antioxidant in biomembranes) and selenium (an essential micronutrient for humans). A few examples of some recent work from Ahmad laboratory are provided below.