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Johan Bjorkegren

  • SENIOR FACULTY Genetics and Genomic Sciences
  • SENIOR FACULTY Medicine, Cardiology
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Education

  • MD, Karolinska University Hospital

  • PhD, Karolinska Institutet

Biography

    The goal of my research is to us a multi-modal big data analysis to create new and more reliable network models of human biology and disease that can be used to predict disease risk and monitor therapies. To this effort I have created clinical datasets of cardiovascular disease patients enriched for many of these data modalities including imaging, genomics and careful clinical characteristics. I have a broad background in the design of clinical studies to elucidate the complexity of disease. I have also been active in a wide range of cardiovascular disease (CVD)-related research areas extending from my early work in exploring the role of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins in coronary artery disease (CAD) to my post-doctoral studies establishing the hepatic gene microsomal triglyceride transfer protein (Mttp), as a key target to lower plasma cholesterol levels and reduce atherosclerosis in mouse studies. After this early research, my focus has been clinical studies of CAD that have been more systems biology focused, being among the first clinical scientist to apply the emerging molecular profiling technologies to large cohorts of individuals. The focus of these studies is on the role of functionally associated genes in molecular networks driving disease. These studies that are highly relevant to the proposed research, have resulted in several high-end publications, and in one of the world’s most unique CAD-related datasets generated on human subjects (the STARNET cohort), with RNA sequence data in up to nine disease-relevant tissues isolated from several hundreds of clinically well–characterized patients. This unique dataset is believed to be an important resource for the proposed proposal in providing network models that can predict risk and clinical outcomes of CAD. I also have entrepreneurial dreams enabling my research results to become useful for the patients suffering CAD. For this purpose I have pursued several entrepreneurial projects in my career trying to make use of my early training as a MBA at the Stockholm University. In this vein, I have spent most of my time managing Clinical Gene Networks AB which is the first Bio-IT company in Sweden founded in 2003 seeking to explore clinical networks to generate the next generation therapies based on network models of complex diseases. I was also involved in starting Sweden’s version of “23andMe”, DNA-Guide Europa AB. I am very exited to now be part of the team at the Department of Genetics and Genomic Sciences, Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multi-scale Biology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Eric Schadt and I have a longstanding collaboration based on similar ideas despite widely different basic training. I know I am now at the best (or even only) place where the diversity of skills actually will make my dreams come true. I am truly exited: “lets do this!”

Publications

Bjorkegren J, Kovacic J, Dudley D, Schadt E. Genome-wide significant loci-how important are they? Systems genetics to understand heritability of coronary artery disease and other common complex disorders. Journal of the American College of Cardiology ;.

Bjorkegren J, Shang M, Talukdar H, Hofmann J, Niaudet C, Asl H, Jain R, Rossignoli A, Cedergren C, Silveira A, Gigante B, Leander K, Faire U, Hamsten A, Russalepp A, Melander O, Ivert T, Michoel T, Shadt E, Betsholtz C, Skogsberg J. Lim domain binding 2: a key driver of transendothelial migration of leukocytes and atherosclerosis. Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology 2014;.

Bjorkegren J, Hagg S, Talukdar H, Foroughi H, Jain R, Cedergren C, Shang M, Rossignoli A, Takolander R, Melander O, Hamsten A, Michoel T, Skogsberg J. Plasma Cholesterol–Induced Lesion Networks Activated before Regression of Early, Mature, and Advanced Atherosclerosis. PLos Genetics 2014 February;.

Bjorkegren J, Schadt E. New (Network Enabled Wisdom) in Biology, Medicine and Health Care. Science Translational Medi 2012 January;.

Hagg S, Salehpour M, Noori P, Lundstrom J, Possnert G, Takolander R, Konrad P, Rosfors S, Ruusalepp A, Tegner J, Skogsberg J, Bjorkegren J. Carotid Plaque Regeneration Time Is a Feature of Plaque Stability Inversely Related to Levels of Plasma Insulin. PLoS ONE 2011 April;.

Hagg S, Skogsberg J, Lundstrom J, Noori P, Nilsson R, Zhong H, Maleki S, Shang M, Brinne B, Bradshaw M, Bajic V, Samnegard A, Silveira A, Kaplan L, Gigante B, Leander K, de Faire U, Rosfors S, Lockowandt U, Liska J, Konrad P, Takolander R, Franco-Cereceda A, Schadt E, Ivert T, Hamsten A, Tegner J, Bjorkegren J. Multi-organ expression profiling uncovers a gene module in coronary artery disease involving transendothelial migration of leukocytes and LIM domain binding 2: the Stockholm Atherosclerosis Gene Expression (STAGE) study. PLoS Genetics 2009 December;.

Industry Relationships

Physicians and scientists on the faculty of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai often interact with pharmaceutical, device and biotechnology companies to improve patient care, develop new therapies and achieve scientific breakthroughs. In order to promote an ethical and transparent environment for conducting research, providing clinical care and teaching, Mount Sinai requires that salaried faculty inform the School of their relationships with such companies.

Below are financial relationships with industry reported by Dr. Bjorkegren during 2013 and/or 2014. Please note that this information may differ from information posted on corporate sites due to timing or classification differences.

Consulting:

  • Clinical Gene Networks AB

Equity (Stock or stock options valued at greater than 5% ownership of a publicly traded company or equity of any value in a privately held company)

  • Clinical Gene Networks AB

Mount Sinai's faculty policies relating to faculty collaboration with industry are posted on our website at http://icahn.mssm.edu/about-us/services-and-resources/faculty-resources/handbooks-and-policies/faculty-handbook. Patients may wish to ask their physician about the activities they perform for companies.

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Address

Icahn Medical Institute Floor 14th Room 14-70A
1425 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10029