Todd Alexander (PhD, Hospital for Sick Children, U of Toronto - MD, University of Western Ontario)
Division of Nephrology
Departments of Pediatrics & Physiology
Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
4-585 Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA)
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 1C9
Tel: 780 248-5557
The focus of Dr. Alexander’s research is primary transport mechanisms by which the renal tubule regulates the body’s electrolyte and fluid balance. In particular he seeks to understand how altered tubular calcium transport leads to the development of osteoporosis and kidney stones and the molecular mechanisms underlying the increased renal sodium absorption which results in hypertension. More specifically, the lab is trying to identify the mechanisms both driving and permitting the paracellular flux of calcium between proximal tubular epithelia, the nephron segment recently identified to be defective in individuals with hypercalciuria, kidney stones and some individuals with osteoporosis. With respect to hypertension again the focus is the proximal nephron. However, in this instance a series of membrane protein-protein interactions are being analyzed to ascertain how the huge amount of salt (1.2 Kg per diem) and water (110L per diem) are absorbed in excess by this part of the kidney. The direct consequence of altered regulation in this process are volume expansion and increased blood pressure.