Picture of Dr. Kaushik Desai

Dr. Kaushik Desai MSc, PhD, MD, MBBS Faculty, Pharmacology

Research Areas

  • Endothelial dysfunction, hypertension, diabetes
  • Role of nitric oxide, arginine, oxidative stress, methylglyoxal, hyperglycemia, hyperfructosemia and their interrelationships
  • Development of preventive strategies against hyperfructosemia- and hyperglycemia-induced pathology

About Dr. Kaushik Desai

Academic Credentials

  • Ph.D. (Pharmacology) William Harvey Research Institute, Univ. of London, U.K.
  • M.D. Government Medical College, South Gujarat Univ., India
  • M.Sc. (Pharmacology) King’s College London, Univ. of London, U.K.
  • M.B.B.S. Government Medical College, South Gujarat Univ., India

Research Techniques and Expertise

Highly skilled in a variety of in vivo, in vitro, immunohistochemical, cell culture and molecular biology techniques.
In vivo studies - Arterial, venous, ventricular, tracheal cannulations, hemodynamic measurements and analysis, use of perfused micropsheres for regional blood flow and hemodynamic studies, telemetry probe implantations, subcutaneous minipump implantation.
In vitro studies - isolated organ bath studies using perfused mesentery, kidney, aortic rings, ileum, tracheal chains, vas deferens, whole stomach.
Cell culture - isolation of fresh rat aortic endothelial cells and culture, culture of endothelial cells in 3D collagen gel for capillary angiogenesis, vascular smooth muscle cell culture, laminar flow and shear stress studies using a parallel plate chamber.
Immunohistochemistry – fixing of fresh tissues, embedding, cutting sections, use of a cryostat, immunofluorescence and horseradish peroxidase staining techniques, immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy.
Others – HPLC, western blotting

Research Funding

Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation New Investigator
Heart and Stroke Foundation Grant-in-Aid
Childrens’ Hospital Foundation of Saskatchewan Research Grant (Co-investigator)

Graduate Students

  • Qian Huang M.Sc.
  • Jianghai Liu Ph.D. (Co-supervisor)

Selected Publications

  1. Dhar I, Dhar A, Wu L, Desai KM.  Methylglyoxal, a reactive glucose metabolite, increases renin angiotensin aldosterone and blood pressure in male Sprague-Dawley rats.  Am J Hypertens. 2014 Mar;27(3):308-16.
  2. Dhar I, Dhar A, Wu L, Desai KM.  Increased methylglyoxal formation with upregulation of renin angiotensin system in fructose fed Sprague Dawley rats.  PLoS One. 2013 Sep 10;8(9):e74212. 
  3. Dhar A, Dhar I, Jiang B, Desai KM, Wu L. Chronic methylglyoxal infusion by minipump causes pancreatic ? cell dysfunction and induces type 2 diabetes in Sprague-Dawley rats. Diabetes. 2011;60(3):899-908. (Corresponding author).
  4. Desai KM, Chang T, Untereiner A, Wu L. Hydrogen sulfide and the metabolic syndrome. Expert Rev. Clin. Pharmacol. 2011;4:63-73.
  5. Dhar A, Dhar I, Desai KM, Wu L. Methylglyoxal scavengers attenuate endothelial dysfunction induced by methylglyoxal and and high concentrations of glucose. Br. J. Pharmacol. 2010;161(8):1843-1856. (Corresponding author).
  6. Desai KM, Chang T, Wang H, Banigesh A, Dhar A, Liu J, Untereiner A, Wu L. Oxidative stress and aging: Is methylglyoxal the hidden enemy? Can. J. Physiol. Pharmacol. 2010;88(3):273-284.
  7. Dhar A, Desai K, Wu L. Alagebrium attenuates acute methylglyoxal induced glucose intolerance in Sprague-Dawley rats. Br. J. Pharmacol. 2010; 159(1):166-175. (Corresponding author).
  8. Dhar A, Desai K, Liu J, Wu L. Methylglyoxal, protein binding and biological samples: Are we getting the tryue measure? J. Chromatogr. B Analyt. Technol. Biomed. Life Sci. 2009;877(11-12):1093-1100.
  9. Dhar A, Desai KM, Kazachkov M, Yu P, Wu L. Methylglyoxal production in vascular smooth muscle cells from different metabolic precursors. Metabolism 2008;57(9):1211-1220.
  10. Desai KM, Wu L. Free radical generation by methylglyoxal in tissues. Drug Metabol. Drug Interactions. 2008;23:151-173.
  11. Wang X, Jia X, Chang T, Desai K, Wu L. Attenuation of hypertension development by scavenging methylglyoxal in fructose-treated rats. J. Hypertens. 2008;26(4):765-772.
  12. Desai KM, Wu L. Methylglyoxal and Advanced Glycation Endproducts: New Therapeutic Horizons? Rec. Pat. Cardiovas. Drug Dis. 2007;2(2):89-99.
  13. Wang X, Chang T, Jiang B, Desai KM, Wu L. Attenuation of hypertension development by aminoguanidine in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Am. J. Hypertens. 2007;20(6):629-636.
  14. Desai KM, Gopalakrishnan V, Hiebert LM, McNeill JR, Wilson TW. EDHF-mediated rapid restoration of hypotensive response to acetylcholine after chronic, but not acute, nitric oxide synthase inhibition in rats. Eur. J. Pharmacol. 2006;546(1-3):120-126. (Corresponding author).
  15. Sankaralingam S, Desai KM, Wilson TW. Clofibrate acutely reverses saline-induced endothelial dysfunction: role of calcium activated potassium channels. Am. J. Hypertens. 2006;19(11):1167-1173.
  16. Wang X, Desai KM, Chang T, Juurlink BHJ, de Champlain J, Wu L. Gender-related differences in advanced glycation endproducts, oxidative stress markers and nitric oxide synthases in rats. Kidney Int. 2006;69(2):281-287.
  17. Wang X, Desai KM, Chang T, Wu L. Vascular methylglyoxal metabolism and the development of hypertension. J. Hypertens. 2005;23(8):1565-1573.
  18. Shinde UA, Desai KM, Yu C, Gopalakrishnan V. Nitric oxide synthase inhibition exaggerates the hypotensive response to ghrelin: role of calcium-activated potassium channels. J. Hypertens. 2005;23(4):779-784.
  19. Wang X, Desai K, Clausen J-T, Wu L. Increased methylglyoxal and advanced glycation endproducts in kidney from spontaneously hypertensive rats. Kidney Int. 2004;66(6):2315-2321.
  20. Laight DW, Desai KM, Anggard EE, Carrier MJ. Endothelial dysfunction accompanies a pro-oxidant, pro-diabetic challenge in the insulin resistant, obese Zucker rat in vivo. Eur. J. Pharmacol. 2000;402(1-2):95-99.
  21. Laight DW, Desai KM, Gopaul NK, Anggard EE, Carrier MJ. Pro-oxidant challenge in vivo promotes the onset of NIDDM in the insulin resistant obese Zucker rat. Br. J. Pharmacol. (Special report), 1999;128:269-271.
  22. Laight DW, Desai KM, Gopaul NK, Anggard EE, Carrier MJ. F2-isoprostane evidence of oxidant stress in the insulin resistant obese Zucker rat: effects of vitamin E. Eur. J. Pharmacol. 1999;377(1):89-92.
  23. Papapetropoulos A, Desai KM, Rudic RD, Mayer B, Zhang R, Ruiz-Torres MP, Garcia-Cardena G, Madri JA, Sessa WC. Nitric oxide synthase inhibitors attenuate transforming growth factor-?1-stimulated capillary organization in vitro. Am. J. Pathol. 1997;150(5):1835-1844.
  24. Shesely EG, Maeda N, Kim HS, Desai KM, Krege JH, Laubach VE, Sherman PA, Sessa WC, Smithies O. Elevated blood pressures in mice lacking endothelial nitric oxide synthase. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., USA, 1996;93(23):13176-13181.
  25. Sessa WC, Garcia-Cardena G, Liu J, Keh A, Pollock JS, Bradley J, Thiru S, Braverman IM, Desai KM. The Golgi association of endothelial nitric oxide synthase is necessary for the efficient synthesis of nitric oxide. J. Biol. Chem. 1995;270 (30):17641-17644.
  26. Desai KM, Warner TD, Bishop AE, Polak JM, Vane JR. Nitric oxide, and not vasoactive intestinal peptide, as the main neurotransmitter of vagally induced relaxation of the guinea pig stomach. Br. J. Pharmacol. 1994;113:1197-1202. (Corresponding author).
  27. Desai KM, Warner TD, Vane JR. 5-HT3 receptors do not mediate vagally induced relaxation or contraction of the isolated stomach of the guinea pig. Br. J. Pharmacol., 1994;111:346-350. (Corresponding author).
  28. Desai KM, Zembowicz A, Sessa WC, Vane JR. Nitroxergic nerves mediate vagally induced relaxation in the isolated stomach of the guinea pig. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., USA. 1991;88(24):11490-11494. (Corresponding author).
  29. Desai KM, Sessa WC, Vane JR. Involvement of nitric oxide in the reflex relaxation of the stomach to accommodate food or fluid. Nature (London). 1991;351:477-479