The Scientists Behind CardioVax

Prediman K. Shah, MD, FACC, FACP, FCCP

Founding Scientist

Dr. Prediman K. (PK) Shah is a Founding Scientist of CardioVax. The Company's core technology is based on over 20 years of his research in the cardiovascular field. Dr. Shah is a world-recognized clinician and leader in immunotherapies for cardiovascular disease and is an active scientific advisor to the CardioVax Management Team.


Dr. Shah has been the Director of the Division of Cardiology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center since 1995. He also is the Director of the Oppenheimer Atherosclerosis Research Center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where he leads several studies that focus on heart disease prevention and treatment. 



Dr. Shah also holds the Shapell and Webb Family Endowed Chair in Cardiology at Cedars-Sinai. He has been Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) since 1992. 


In the early 1990s, he worked in the cardiovascular research laboratory at the Massachusetts General Hospital of the Harvard Medical School in Boston. Over his distinguished career, he has edited three books on heart disease and published more than 550 scientific papers, reviews, book chapters, and abstracts. He is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology (ACC), the American College of Physicians, and the American College of Chest Physicians. He has been a member of the ACC's Annual Scientific Program Committee and he has co-chaired the Clinical Cardiology (ClinCard) Spotlight sessions. 


Since 1992, Dr. Shah and colleagues have searched for new and innovative ways to understand the causes of cardiovascular disease.  His efforts have led him to new discoveries in the areas of atherosclerosis and vascular inflammation; processes that lead to clogged arteries, heart attacks, and strokes. 


Dr. Shah received his medical degree from Medical College in Srinagar and completed an internship at SMHS Hospital before moving on to internships at Mount Sinai Hospital and Montefiore Hospital of Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. After a fellowship in cardiology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine-Montefiore, Medical Center, he came to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in 1976. He was named director of the medical center's Cardiovascular Fellowship Training Program in 1988 and director of the Atherosclerosis Research Center in 1993.

Jan Nilsson, MD, PHD

Founding Scientist

Dr. Jan Nilsson is a Founding Scientist of CardioVax and serves as an active advisor to the Company's Management Team. As a leading expert in atherosclerosis, Dr. Nilsson guides the scientific strategy of CardioVax's product development programs. His leadership is essential to the direction and implementation of CardioVax's R&D programs.


Dr. Nilsson has been a Professor of Medicine at Lund University since joining their faculty in 1998.  He currently holds positions as Chairman of the Clinical Research Center (CRC) and Chairman of Experimental Cardiovascular Research at Lund University Hospital in Malmö, Sweden. Furthermore, Dr. Nilsson is Director of the Malmö University Hospital Clinical Trial Unit and a Director on the board of Malmö University. From 2001-2005, Dr. Nilsson also served as Dean of Medicine at Lund University. 



Prior to joining the faculty at Lund University, he held positions at the Karolinska Institute in Solna as Associate Professor of Cell Biology in 1985, Deputy Chairman in the Department of Medicine from 1993-1996, and later as Professor of Medicine from 1996-1998. Since 1996, he has also been visiting Professor at the Department of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and a visiting scientist to the Department of Cardiology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California. 


Throughout his scientific career, his research has focused on the regulation of smooth muscle cell proliferation and the inflammatory response of the vascular wall to oxidized lipoprotein and mechanical injury. In recent years, his main research projects focus on the role of immune responses against oxidized LDL antigens in atherosclerosis. He has published over 200 papers in vascular cell biology and atherosclerotic research.


Dr. Nilsson was chairman of the working group for the Pathogenesis of Atherosclerosis in the European Society of Cardiology from 1994-1996, board member of the Scandinavian Society for Atherosclerosis Research, and Deputy General Secretary of the Swedish Medical Research Council from 1996-1999. He is currently a member of the editorial boards for Atherosclerosis, and Thrombosis and Vascular Biology. 


Dr. Nilsson received his degree in Medicine and PhD in Histology from the Karolinska Institute in Solna, Sweden. 

Göran Hansson, MD, PHD

Scientific Advisor

Dr. Göran Hansson serves as a scientific advisor to CardioVax and has licensed several technologies for the treatment of atherosclerosis to the company. Dr. Hansson is an accomplished expert in atherosclerosis and a pioneer of immunomodulation treatments for atherosclerosis. He advises the Senior Management Team on the product programs as well as emerging technologies in the cardiovascular immunotherapeutic space.


Dr. Hansson is Principal Investigator of the Experimental Cardiovascular Group at the Karolinska Institute in Solna, Sweden and a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. In 1985, Dr. Hansson began his career in Internal Medicine and Clinical Chemistry at Sahlgrenska Hospital in Gothenburg, Sweden. He became a specialist in Clinical Chemistry in 1989 and focused on cardiovascular research at the Medical Research Council from 1990-1994.



From 1994-1995, he was Professor of Cell Biology at Gothenburg University. In December 1994, he joined the faculty of the Karolinska Institute as Professor of Experimental Cardiovascular Medicine.


Dr. Hansson has spent much of his scientific career exploring the interaction between the immune system, the cardiovascular system, and the onset of atherosclerotic diseases. For his research, he has received several awards including the Eric K Fernströms Prize for Young Researchers (1992), Lars Werkö Prize for Heart-Lung Research (1998), the American AEHA Vulnerable Plaque Lifetime Achievement Award (2003), and the Dutch Eijkman Medal (2003).


From 2004-2008, Dr. Hansson held the privilege position as Secretary of the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institute, which each year selects the winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. This honor included serving as secretary to the Nobel Committee, which reviews the laureate nominations, and head of the Nobel Office at Karolinska Institute. He was the eighth secretary in the history of the medical Nobel Prize. Dr. Hansson is also a member of the Karolinska Institute Board of Research and the Heart-Lung Scientific Board.


In addition to his many accomplishments, Dr. Hansson is a scientific advisor to the Finnish Academy, Wihuri Institute in Helsinki, Centers for Biomolecular Medicine in Vienna, Wesley Institute in Brisbane, the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco and Oxford University. Dr. Hansson is European editor for the magazine Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, Consulting Editor for the Journal of Clinical Investigation, and is part of the editorial board of the council for Circulation. Dr. Hansson received his medical degree from Gothenburg University and post-doctorate degree in pathology from University of Washington in Seattle.


Avijit Lahiri, MD

Scientific Advisor

Dr. Avijit Lahiri serves as a strategic and scientific advisor to CardioVax and sits as the Medical Director of the Cardiac Imaging and Research Centre at the Wellington Hospital in London. Dr. Lahiri has also served as a consultant cardiologist and director of cardiac research at the Institute of Medical Research, Northwick Park Hospital and St. Marks, Imperial College London for over 20 years.


Dr. Lahiri is the Medical Director of the Cardiac Imaging and Research Centre at the Wellington Hospital, London. He earned his medical degree from The National Medical College in Calcutta, India.



He completed his training at Northwick Park Hospital, London. He was consultant cardiologist and director of cardiac research Institute of Medical Research, Northwick Park Hospital and St. Marks, Imperial College London for over 20 years. Professor Lahiri is a recipient of many national and international research grants.


He has been a pioneer in the field of cardiac research for over 30 years. His research has lead to changes in the evaluation and treatment procedures of heart disease. Professor Lahiri has published over 400 articles on the subject of coronary artery disease, nuclear cardiology, Electron Beam CT (cardiac CT), echocardiography, ambulatory blood pressure monitoring, myocardial infarction, hypertension and clinical pharmacology. He has written and edited numerous major Cardiology textbook chapters.


Professor Lahiri was a founding member of the British Society of Nuclear Cardiology, American Society of Nuclear Cardiology and International Society of Nuclear Cardiology Societies. He was a founding member and past President of the International Congress of Nuclear Cardiology. Professor Lahiri is a member of several other cardiology organizations including the European Society of Cardiology and the American College of Cardiology. He has recently been invited to become an honorary lecturer at Imperial College School of Medicine, University of London.


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