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Profile: Tahir Hussain

Tahir Hussain
Tahir Hussain, Ph.D.
Professor of Pharmacology
Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences
555 Science and Research Building 2
Houston, TX 77204-5037
713-743-1229 (fax)


B.Sc. (Chemistry) M.Sc., M.Phil., Ph.D. (Biochemistry) - Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, India
Post-Doctorate – Pharmacology, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC

Research Interests

Our research is focused on understanding the cellular and molecular regulation of the Angiotensin hormone and its receptor expression and the physiological and therapeutic role of these molecules (especially AT2 receptor) in improving renal-cardiovascular function, lowering blood pressure and reducing body weight and inflammation. These investigations utilize molecular/biochemical, cellular and physiological/metabolic approaches, including renal function and blood pressure measurements in various obesity animal models.

Angiotension binds to AT1 and AT2 receptors. Compared to the AT2 receptors, the AT1 receptor are expressed in greater density and mediate most of the known actions of Angiotensin II, such as vasoconstriction, anti-natriuresis, and increased blood pressure.

In general, AT2 receptors are suggested to oppose the actions mediated by AT1 receptors. Recently, we found that renal AT2 receptor expression is increased and mediates natriuresis in diabetic and obese rat models. Also, we observed that AT2 receptors may have roles in inflammation, lipid metabolism and insulin sensitivity, which interrelated phenomenon in obesity. Our studies also revealed that AT2R may be more beneficial in females in reducing obesity.

We expect that our molecular and whole-animal studies will indicate a therapeutic target to treat obesity and related health disorders, including hypertension, diabetes and kidney disease.

Awards & Honors

  • UH Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Research (Associate Professor Level), University of Houston, 2010
  • Teaching Excellence Award, Rho Chi Society (Beta Omicron Chapter), University of Houston College of Pharmacy, 2009, 2004 and 2002
  • Honorable Mention - Teaching Excellence Award, Rho Chi Society (Beta Omicron Chapter), University of Houston College of Pharmacy, 2008
  • Faculty Service Excellence Award, University of Houston College of Pharmacy, 2006
  • Young Scientist Travel Award, Aventis Pharmaceuticals, Renal and Cardiovascular Symposium at Jackson, MS, 2001
  • Junior Scientist Award (Physiology), Association of Scientists of Indian Origin in America, Annual Meeting of Experimental Biology, 1994.
  • Young Scientist Travel Award, American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. "Adenosine Receptor Agonist-Induced Regulation of G-proteins in Coronary Artery," 1992

Teaching Areas

  • Cellular Pharmacology (History of cell signaling: receptor, cAMP, IP3, G proteins)
  • Cardiovascular/Renal Pharmacology/Physiology (Renin angiotensin system)
  • Advanced Pharmacology (Insulin signaling and resistance, treatment of diabetes)
  • Cellular Life Science I (proteins/enzymes, carbohydrate metabolism, cell-cycle and cancer)

Selected Publications

Samuel P, Ali Q, Sabuhi R, Wu Y, Hussain T. High Na-intake increases renal angiotensin II levels and reduces the expression of ACE2-AT2R-MasR axis in obese Zucker rats. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol 303:F412-419, 2012. PMID:22592638

Ali Q, Hussain T. AT2 receptor non-peptide agonist C21 promotes natriuresis in obese Zucker rats. Hypertens Res, 167:43-47, 2012. PMID:22297475

Asghar M, Tayebati SK, Lokhandwala MF, Hussain T. Potential dopamine-1 receptor stimulation in hypertension management. Curr Hypertens Rep 13:294-302, 2011. Review

Sabuhi R, Ali Q, Asghar M, Al-Zamily NHR, Hussain T. Role of angiotensin II AT2 receptor in inflammation and oxidative stress: Opposing effects in lean and obese Zucker rats. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol 300:F700-F706, 2011. PMID:21209001

Sabuhi R, Asghar M, Hussain T. NADP(H) oxidase inhibition potentiates AT2 receptor agonist induced natriuresis. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol 299(4):F815-20, 2010. PMID:20668101

Ali Q, Sabuhi R, Hussain T. Interferon regulatory factor-1 mediates glucose-induced up-regulation of AT2 receptors in proximal tubules. Mol Cell Biochem, 344(1-2):65-71, 2010. PMID:20596758

Sourris KC, Morley AL, Koita A, Samuel P, Coughlan MT, Thomas MT, Bierhaus A, Naworth PP, Yamamoto H, Allen TJ, Walther T, Hussain T, Cooper ME, Forbes JM. The receptor for advanced glycation end-products (RAGE) exerts renoprotective effects via the AT2 receptor in diabetic nephropathy. Diabetologia 53(11):2442-2451, 2010.

Shahid G, Hussain T. GRK2-deficiency reduces insulin activation of ERK1/2 and mitogenesis in mouse liver FL83B cells. The Open Diabetes Journal 2:44-47, 2009.

Siddiqui AH, Ali Q, Hussain T. Protective role of angiotensin II AT2 receptor in blood pressure increase in obese Zucker rats. Hypertension, 53:256-261, 2009.

Siddiqui AH, Hussain T. Impaired Angiotensin II AT1 receptor function and enhanced Na,K-ATPase affinity for sodium in proximal tubule of streptozotocin-treated rats. Clin Exp Hypertens, 29: 435-444, 2007.

Shahid G, Hussain T. GRK-2 negatively regulates glycogen synthesis in mouse liver FL83B cells. J Biol Chem 242:20612-20620, 2007.

Siddiqui AH, Hussain T. Enhanced AT1 receptor-mediated vasocontractile response to ANG II in endothelium-denuded aorta of obese Zucker rats. Am J Physiol 292:H1722-H1727, 2007.

Hakam AC, Hussain T. Angiotensin II type 2 receptor agonist directly inhibits proximal tubule sodium pump activity in obese but not in lean Zucker rats. Hypertension 47:1117-1124, 2006.

Shah S, Hussain T. Enhanced angiotensin II-induced stimulation of Na,K-ATPase in the proximal tubules of obese Zucker rats. Clin Exp Hypertens. 28:29-40, 2006.

Hakam AC, Hussain T. Renal Angiotensin II AT2 Receptors promote Natriuresis In Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Rats. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 290:F503-F508, 2006.

Hakam AC, Hussain T. Angiotensin II AT2 receptors Inhibit Proximal Tubular Na+,K+-ATPase Activity via a NO/cGMP Dependent Pathway. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 290:F1430-F1436, 2006.

Presentations & Abstracts

Dhande I, Ali Q, Nag S, Khan A, Hussain T. Protective role of the Angiotensin AT2 Receptor in obesity-induced renal inflammation. FASEB J, (2012).

Nag S, Khan MA, Hussain T. Activation of angiotensin type 2 receptor rescues high-fat diet-induced adipocyte size in young male mice. FASEB J, (2012).

Ali Q, Hussain T. Activation of AT2 receptors reduces renal AT1 receptor and enhances ACE2 activity in obese Zucker rats. FASEB J, (2012).

Samuel P, Khan MA, Nag S, Patki G, Lau Y-S, Inagami T, Hussain T. Angiotensin AT2 receptor contributes towards gender bias in weight gain. Presented in High Blood Pressure Research 2011 at Orlando, Fla., September 20-24, pp 8.

Ali Q, Hussain T. Non-peptide Agonist C21 Promotes Natriuresis in Obese rats via Proximal Tubule AT2 Receptor Linked to NO/cGMP Pathway. Presented in High Blood Pressure Research 2011 at Orlando, September 20-24, pp 194.

Ali Q, Samuel P, Sabuhi R, Hussain T. Chronic Treatment with CGP42112A decreases Blood Pressure and lowers Renin Expression in Obese Zucker Rats. American Society Hypertension, 2010.

Samuel P, Ali Q, Sabuhi R and Hussain T. Differential changes in RAS genes and blood pressure by high Na-intake in lean and obese Zucker rats. American Society Hypertension, 2010.

Ali Q and Hussain T. Role of AT2 receptor in long-term blood pressure control in obese Zucker rats. FASEB J, (2009).

Ali Q and Hussain T. Long-term treatment with ATII subtype 2 receptor agonist CGP42112A increases urinary sodium excretion and lowers blood pressure in obese Zucker rats. (April 2009) The Journal of Clinical Hypertension, Supplement A, Volume 11, Issue 4.

Sabuhi R, Siddiqui A and Hussain T. Cross-talk between NAD(P)H oxidase and AT1 receptors in the proximal tubules of obese Zucker rats. FASEB J (2009).

Hussain T and Suddiqui A.H. Angiotensin II AT1 and AT2 receptors are differentially dysfunctional to regulate Na-K-ATPase (NKA) Activity in the Proximal Tubules of Spontaneously Hypertensive (SHR) rats. FASEB J 22:lb167 (2008).

Hussain T and Siddiqui, A.H. Phospholipase C and NADPH Oxidase Contribute to the Enhanced AT1 receptor mediated Na-K-ATPase Stimulation in the Proximal tubules of Obese Zucker rats. JASN 18:152A 2007.

Siddiqui, A.H. and Hussain T. Chronic treatment with Angiotensin II type 2 receptor Antagonist Increases Blood Pressure in Obese Zucker Rats. (Presented at the 61st Annual Meeting of Council for High Blood Pressure Research, Westin La Paloma - Tucson, AZ, Sep 26-29, 2007.

Siddiqui, A.H. and Hussain T. Enhanced Na-K-ATPase (NKA) Affinity for Sodium and Reduced AT1 Receptor Function on NKA Activity in the Proximal Tubule of Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Rats. FASEB J, 2007.

Hussain T, Fouladi N. Angiotensin II AT2 receptor agonist produces natriuresis in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Hypertension 48:e102, 2006.

Siddiqui A, Hussain T. Na,K-ATPase exhibits higher affinity for sodium and insensitivity to Angiotensin II receptors action in proximal tubule of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat. Hypertension 48:e101, 2006.

Shahid G, Hussain T. GRK2 differentially regulates insulin-induced glycogen synthesis and mitogenesis. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica Suppl 1:302, 2006.

Hakam A, Hussain T. Role of angiotensin II AT2 receptors in sodium metabolism in obese Zucker rats. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica Suppl 1:414, 2006.


  • Member, American Physiological Society
  • Member, American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
  • Member, American Society of Nephrology
  • Member, American Heart Association
  • Member, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy
  • Member, Rho Chi Society

Editorial Board Appointments

  • Associate Editor, Clinical and Experimental Hypertension (2008 – present)
  • Editorial Advisory Board Member, The Open Nitric Oxide Journal (2008 – present)
  • Editorial Board Member, Clinical and Experimental Hypertension (2002 – 2007)