Craig January, MD, PhD


Dr. January is currently a Professor of Medicine at the University of Wisconsin (UW) School of Medicine and Public Health in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. He attended medical and graduate school at the University of Iowa, where he received his medical degree in 1976 and a doctorate in Physiology and Biophysics in 1978. He completed his internship, residency and cardiology fellowship training at the University of Chicago. Dr. January remained at the University of Chicago until 1994. He joined the faculty at UW in 1995 as Professor of Medicine and is a former Head of the Cardiovascular Medicine Division.  He now serves as the Vice-chairman for Research for the Department of Medicine.

Dr. January has done seminal work defining the molecular mechanisms of the drug-induced (acquired) long QT syndrome. This syndrome is manifest in some patients in response to many different drugs and can potentially lead to the lethal arrhythmia, torsades de pointe. His work has demonstrated that many of these agents prolong the QT interval by blocking either selectively or non-selectively hERG (Kv11.1) potassium channels. His hERG expressing transfected cell lines are used widely in the pharmaceutical industry to test for hERG liability, and this has allowed for development of safer pharmaceuticals with a lower incidence of cardiac proarrhythmia. His work in congenital (inherited) long QT syndrome has identified abnormalities in mutant hERG protein trafficking that is now associated with many hERG mutations.  His ongoing research examines the molecular basis of the drug interactions that may correct the protein trafficking defect.  He is also co-director of the UW Inherited Arrhythmias Clinic.

Dr. January is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology and member of several societies including the American Heart Association Basic Sciences Council, Heart Rhythm Society, and he is past-president of the Cardiac Electrophysiology Society. He has served extensively on peer-review panels including at the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association, and VA merit review. Dr. January teaches in both clinical and basic settings.