Dan Roden, MD


Dr. Roden is a clinical pharmacologist and cardiologist. He is currently Professor of Medicine and Pharmacology and William Stokes Professor of Experimental Therapeutics at Vanderbilt University, and serves as Director of the Oates Institute for Experimental Therapeutics and Assistant Vice-Chancellor for Personalized Medicine.

His research focuses on mechanisms underlying variability in response to drug therapy. His major interest has been the relationship between mutations and polymorphisms in ion channel and other genes, and susceptibility to arrhythmias, including drug-related arrhythmias. Examples of individual projects in his laboratory include definition of the functional consequences of sodium channel deletion in zebrafish; development of methods to establish function of non-coding variants in ion channel and other genes, and to assess their functional significance in vitro and in patients; exploitation of a new method to rapidly generate mice with variant cardiac sodium channels; and studies of structure-function relations of wild-type and variant ion channels. The laboratory's research is being translated into studies of arrhythmia genomics and pharmacogenomics.

Dr. Roden directs the Pharmacogenomics of Arrhythmia Therapy (PAT) program, the Vanderbilt site part of the NIH Pharmacogenetics Research Network. The site studies drugs used to treat cardiac arrhythmias and on testing the hypothesis that the effect of certain drugs to unexpectedly provoke potentially fatal arrhythmias includes a genetic component. Work in PAT identifies common polymorphisms and genomic structures in arrhythmia candidate genes (ion channel and other), establishes function of these variants, and studies association between DNA variants and large databases of patients with defined arrhythmia and drug response phenotypes.

Dr. Roden has received the Young Investigator Award from the American Society of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, and the Distinguished Scientist Award from the Heart Rhythm Society. He has been elected to membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians.