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Dr. Hope Anderson

Dr. Hope Anderson

Principal Investigator
Vascular Biology, Canadian Centre for Agri-Food Research in Health and Medicine

Associate Professor and Graduate Chair
Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Manitoba

Research Focus

  • Cardioprotective effects of CLA, a dietary polyunsaturated fatty acid that occurs naturally in dairy and meat products from ruminant animals.
  • Elucidation of novel signaling mechanisms underlying cardiac hypertrophy. A specific example includes diacylglycerol kinase signaling in the nucleus of heart muscle cells.
  • Mechanisms of defective artery function in hypertension, and effects of candidate dietary interventions.

Why is this work important?

In medical practice, emphasis is now routinely placed on dietary modification as a preventative measure to forestall cardiovascular disease. Unfortunately, fully exploiting the preventative value of nutritional intervention is posing a huge challenge given the complex interaction between diet and bodily function. We need more information about specific dietary approaches and how they work. The goal of our research program is to understand how risk factors for cardiovascular disease, especially diabetes, hypertension, and cardiac hypertrophy, promote the development of heart failure. Our ultimate aim is to identify new therapies, from a nutritional perspective, that prevent or slow the onset of heart failure.

What techniques and equipment are used in this laboratory?

  • in vivo study of cardiovascular disease: echocardiography, tail-cuff plethysmography
  • in vitro study of cardiac hypertrophy: cell culture, confocal microscopy, planimetry, promoter-reporter assays, biochemical assays (immunoblotting, immunoprecipitation, etc)
  • in vitro study of arteries: pressure myography

About Hope Anderson

Dr. Hope Anderson is an Associate Professor and Graduate Chair of Pharmacy at the University of Manitoba. The goal of her research program is to understand how risk factors for cardiovascular disease, especially hypertension (high blood pressure), cardiac hypertrophy (abnormal growth of the heart), and diabetes promote the development of heart failure. Her ultimate aim is to identify new therapies, perhaps from a nutritional perspective, that prevent or slow the onset of heart failure. To achieve this aim, Dr. Anderson’s laboratory at the St. Boniface Hospital Research Centre uses several models of cardiovascular disease of escalating complexity ranging from cultured heart muscle cells, to isolated hearts and arteries, to hearts and arteries in vivo.

Current research in Dr. Anderson’s laboratory focuses on the following:

Protective effects of dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) on the cardiovascular system. Ms. Basma Aloud, a M.Sc. student in the laboratory, is investigating the beneficial effects of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) on the heart. CLA is a dietary polyunsaturated fatty acid that occurs naturally in dairy and meat products from ruminant animals. Previous work from the lab suggests that CLA prevents abnormal growth of the heart that results from hemodynamic stressors such as hypertension. Ms. Aloud’s M.Sc. thesis work is to extend these findings by querying whether CLA might protect against the heart disease (abnormal heart structure and contractile function) that is associated with diabetes.

Elucidation of novel signaling mechanisms underlying cardiac hypertrophy. A specific example includes regulation of heart muscle cell growth by endocannabinoids. These are bioactive lipids that include amides, esters and ethers of long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and occur naturally within our bodies. Ms. Yan Lu (M.Sc. student) is studying drugs that activate the endocannabinoid system, and their ability to protect against cardiac hypertrophy. Indeed, Ms. Lu has identified distinct effects of endocannabinoids selective for CB2 cannabinoid receptors, and is currently working on the signaling pathways invoked by CB2 receptor activation. This research project is supported by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (Manitoba Foundation).

Signaling mechanisms underlying the protective actions on the cardiovascular system of existing drugs used as therapy in diabetic patients. Dr. Haining Zhang (post-doctoral fellow) is probing the signaling mechanisms that underlie the anti-hypertrophic actions of PPAR (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor) ligands such as troglitazone and fenofibrate. In particular, Dr. Zhang is focusing on signaling in the nuclei of cardiac myocytes that is elicited by such anti-diabetic drugs. This research project is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Mechanisms of defective artery function in hypertension, and effects of candidate dietary interventions.Recently, the laboratory utilized pressure myography of isolated arterial segments to study the vascular effects of resveratrol, a naturally occurring compound found in select foods such as red grapes and red wine. The lab then theorized that the intact grape might have added beneficial effects (as opposed to an isolated bioactive component such as resveratrol). Thus, we proceeded with a study to evaluate the effects of dietary grape consumption on hypertension and related end-organ disease. This study was supported by the California Table Grapes Commission.

For more information, please contact:

Dr. Hope Anderson
Tel. (204) 235-3587
Fax. (204) 237-4018

1. Thandapilly SJ, LeMaistre JL, Louis XL, Anderson CM, Netticadan T, Anderson HD. Vascular and cardiac effects of grape powder in the spontaneously hypertensive rat. Am J Hypertens. 2012; 25:1070-1076.

2. Wang Y, Jacome-Sosa MM, Ruth MR, Lu Y, Shen J, Reaney MJ, Scott SL, Dugan ME, Anderson HD, Field CJ, Proctor SD, Vine DF. The intestinal bioavailability of vaccenic acid and activation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-? and -? in a rodent model of dyslipidemia and the metabolic syndrome. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012; 56:1234-1246.

3. LeMaistre JL, Sanders SA, Stobart MJ, Lu L, Knox JD, Anderson HD and Anderson CM. Coactivation of NMDA receptors by glutamate and D-serine induces dilation of isolated middle cerebral arteries. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 2011; 32:537-547.

4. Huang Y, Zhang H, Shao Z, O’Hara KA, Kopilas MA, Yu L, Netticadan T, Anderson HD. Suppression of endothelin-1-induced cardiac myocyte hypertrophy by PPAR agonists: role of diacylglycerol kinase zeta. Cardiovascular Research. 2011; 90:267-275.

5. Thandapilly SJ, Louis XL, Yang T, Stringer DM, Yu L, Zhang S, Wigle J, Kardami E, Zahradka P, Taylor C, Anderson HD, Netticadan T. Resveratrol prevents norepinephrine induced hypertrophy in adult rat cardiomyocytes, by activating NO-AMPK pathway. Eur J Pharmacol. 2011; 668:217-224

6. Behbahani J, Thandapilly SJ, Louis XL, Huang Y, Shao Z, Kopilas MA, Wojciechowski P, Netticadan T, Anderson HD. Effects of resveratrol on small artery compliance and remodeling in the spontaneously hypertensive rat. Am J Hypertens. 2010; 23:1273-8.

7. Hunt WT, Kamboj A, Anderson HD, Anderson CM. Protection of cortical neurons from excitotoxcity by conjugated linoleic acid. J Neurochem. 2010;115:123-30.

8. Thandapilly SJ, Wojciechowski P, Behbahani J, Louis XL, Yu L, Juric D, Kopilas MA, Anderson HD, Netticadan T. Resveratrol prevents the development of pathological cardiac hypertrophy and contractile dysfunction in the SHR without lowering blood pressure. Am J Hypertens. 2010; 23:192-196.

9. Alibin CP, Kopilas MA, Anderson HDI. Suppression of cardiac myocyte hypertrophy by conjugated linoleic acid: role of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors α and γ. J Biol Chem. 2008; 283:10707-10715.

10. Kopilas MA, Dang LN, Anderson HDI. Effect of dietary trivalent chromium on resistance artery function and nitric oxide signaling in the sucrose-fed spontaneously hypertensive rat. J Vasc Res. 2007; 44:110-118.

11. Aminot-Gilchrist DV, Anderson HDI. Insulin resistance-associated cardiovascular disease: potential benefits of conjugated linoleic acid. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004; 79:1159S-1163S.

12. Anderson HDI, Wang F, Gardner DG. Role of the epidermal growth factor receptor in signaling strain-dependent activation of the brain natriuretic peptide gene. J Biol Chem. 2004; 279:9287-9297.

13. Anderson HDI, Rahmutula D, Gardner DG. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha inhibits endothelial nitric oxide synthase gene promoter activity in bovine aortic endothelial cells. J Biol Chem. 2004; 279:963-969.

14. Chen S, Cao L, Intengan HD, Cui J, Humphreys M, Gardner DG. Osmoregulation of eNOS gene expression in inner medullary collecting duct cells. Role in activation of the type A natriuretic peptide receptor. J Biol Chem. 2002; 277:32498-32504.

15. Liang F, Kovacic-Milivojevic B, Chen S, Cui J, Roediger F, Intengan HD, Gardner DG. Signaling mechanisms underlying strain-dependent brain natriuretic peptide gene transcription. Can J Physiol Pharmacol. 2001; 79:640-645.

16. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Vascular remodeling in hypertension. Roles of apoptosis, inflammation, and fibrosis. Hypertension. 2001; 38:581-587.

17. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Structure and mechanical properties of resistance arteries in hypertension: role of adhesion molecules and extracellular matrix determinants. Hypertension. 2000; 36:312-318.

18. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Vasopeptidase inhibition has potent effects on blood pressure and resistance arteries in stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats. Hypertension. 2000; 35:1221-1225.

19. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Disparate effects of carvedilol versus metoprolol treatment of stroke-prone spontaneous hypertensive rats on endothelial function of resistance arteries. J. Cardiovasc. Pharmacol. 2000; 35:763-768.

20. Intengan HD, Park JB, Schiffrin EL. Role of vasopressin in vascular remodeling of DOCA-salt-treated Brattleboro rats. Hypertension. 2000; 34:907-13.

21. Park JB, Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Reduction of resistance artery stiffness by treatment with the AT1 receptor antagonist losartan in essential hypertension. 2000; J Renin-Angio-Aldo S. 1:40-45.

22. Schiffrin EL, Park JB, Intengan HD, Touyz RM. Correction of arterial structure and endothelial dysfunction in human essential hypertension by the receptor antagonist losartan. Circulation. 2000; 101:1653-1659.

23. Diep QN, Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Endothelin-1 attenuates omega-3 fatty acid-induced apoptosis by inhibition of caspase 3. Hypertension. 2000; 35:287-291.

24. Intengan HD, Thibault G, Li JS, Schiffrin EL. Resistance artery mechanics, structure, and extracellular components in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Effects of AT1-angiotensin receptor antagonism and angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition. Circulation. 1999; 100:2267-2275.

25. Intengan HD, Deng LY, Li JS, Schiffrin EL. Mechanics and composition of human subcutaneous resistance arteries in essential hypertension. Hypertension. 1999; 33:569-74.

26. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Mechanical properties of mesenteric resistance arteries from Dahl salt-resistant and salt-sensitive rats: Role of endothelin-1. J. Hypertens. 1998; 16:1907-1912.

27. Intengan HD, He G, Schiffrin EL. Effect of vasopressin antagonism on structure and mechanics of small arteries and vascular expression of endothelin-1 in deoxycorticosterone acetate-salt hypertensive rats. Hypertension. 1998; 32:770-777.

28. Intengan HD, Schiffrin EL. Role of endothelium in modulation of structural changes of small arteries in hypertension: Effects of therapeutic intervention. J. Hypertens. 1998; 16:S97-S101.

29. Schiffrin EL, Intengan HD, Thibault G, Touyz RM. Clinical significance of endothelin in cardiovascular disease. Curr. Opin. Cardiol. 1997; 12:354-367.

30. Intengan HD, Smyth DD. Renal 2a-adrenoceptor subtype function: Wistar as compared to spontaneously hypertensive rats. Br. J. Pharmacol. 1997; 121:861-866.

31. Intengan HD, Smyth DD. 2a-adrenoceptor subtype stimulation by guanfacine increases osmolar clearance. J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther. 1997; 281:48-53.

32. Intengan HD, Smyth DD. Clonidine increases osmolar clearance and free water clearance via activation of two distinct 2-adrenoceptor sites. Br. J. Pharmacol. 1996; 119:663-670.

33. Belkhiri A, Intengan HD, Klassen GR. A tandem array of 5S ribosomal RNA genes in Pythium irregulare. Gene. 1997; 186:155-159.

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University of Manitoba
2010 Merit Award for any Combination of Teaching, Service, and/or Research, Scholarly Work & Other Creative Activities

American Heart Association
Best of AHA Subspecialty Conferences Distinction

Canadian Hypertension Society
New Investigator Award

Canadian Institutes of Health Research
New Investigator Award

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
New Investigator Award

Medical Research Council of Canada/Canadian Institutes of Health Research
Centennial/Senior Fellowship

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
Post-doctoral Research Fellowship

Bio-Mega/Boehringer Ingelheim
Research Presentation Award

Medical Research Council of Canada
Post-doctoral Research Fellowship

Medical Research Council of Canada/Canadian Hypertension Society
Post-doctoral Research Fellowship

Dr. Anderson’s laboratory would like to gratefully acknowledge the following funding agencies and foundations:

  • Agri-Food Research and Development Initiative
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research
  • Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (Manitoba Foundation)
  • Manitoba Health Research Council
  • Dairy Farmers of Canada
  • University of Manitoba Research Grants Program
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
  • Canada Foundation for Innovation and Partners
  • Dr. Paul H.T. Thorlakson Foundation Fund
  • Manitoba Medical Services Foundation


Life In the Lab