Scientific Advisory Board

Prediman K. Shah

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, investigator 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 Heart Institute from 1995-2013. He also is currently the founder and 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 Clinical 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 650 scientific papers, reviews, book chapters, and abstracts. He is a Fellow and Master of the American College of Cardiology (ACC), fellow of 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. In 2014 he was the co-chair of the annual scientific session of the American College of Cardiology. He is a recipient of numerous honors and award which include: Master of the American College of Cardiology, Pioneer in Medicine at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Distinguished scientist award from the American College of Cardiology, Gifted Teacher award from the American College of Cardiology, Herrick award from the AHA, and Cardiologist of the Year award from Northern California -ACC chapter, Dean’s award for excellence in teaching from UCLA.


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 in Milwaukee 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. He was also the Director of coronary care unit at Cedars Sinai Medical Center from 1980-1995.

Jan Nilsson

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. 

Matthew Budoff

Matthew Budoff, MD, FACC

Scientific Advisor

Dr. Budoff is Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center; and Program Director and Director of Cardiac Computed Tomography, Division of Cardiology, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance, California. Dr. Budoff graduated cum laude from the University of California, Riverside, with a major in biochemistry. He went on to graduate with distinction as a member of Alpha Omega Alpha from the George Washington University School of Medicine, in Washington, DC, before returning to his native California to complete an internship and residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in cardiology at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

Dr. Budoff is at the forefront of the medical community's efforts to develop early detection methods for cardiac disease, the number 1 cause of death in the United States. Given that approximately 50% of US heart disease victims learn of their illness by experiencing a sometimes fatal heart attack, Dr. Budoff has devoted much of his time over the past 20 years to advancing procedures that can help doctors identify cardiac patients early, and place them on a therapeutic path to prevent a heart attack.



Dr. Budoff works on at least 20 active medical research trials at any given time, and is a frequent lecturer on topics of cardiology at symposia, congresses, and annual conferences on every continent. He has authored or co-authored more than 600 research papers, 6 books, and 36 book chapters.

In the past 2 years alone, Dr. Budoff has been honored with multiple awards recognizing his professional skills and accomplishments. Of particular note is his receipt of the Einstein Award for Scientific Achievement from the International Biographical Centre in Cambridge, UK and his inclusion in five respected lists of top doctors in America as well as the US News list of Top Doctors for 2011. Most recently, he was named as one of the "World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds" in 2014.


Göran Hansson

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 as well as Academia Europaea. 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), the Eijkman Medal (2003), the William Harvey Medal of the European Society of Cardiology (2008), the Outstanding Achievement Award of the European Atherosclerosis Society (2009), the Distinguished Service Award of the American Heart Association (2009), the FEDERA Prize (2011), and the Anthony Cerami Prize in Translational Medicine (2014). He is an honorary doctor at the University of Eastern Finland and an honorary professor at Shandong University in China.


From 2004-2006, Dr Hansson was the Chairman of the Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine and from 2009-2014, he held the position as Secretary of the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institute and head of the Medical Nobel Institute. Since 2015, he is the Secretary General and CEO of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and since 2011 the Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nobel Foundation.


In addition to his many accomplishments, Dr. Hansson has been a scientific advisor to the Finnish Academy, Wihuri Institute in Helsinki, Centers for Biomolecular Medicine in Vienna, Center for Medical Inflammation Research in Trondheim, the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco, Istituto Humanitas in Milano, 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.


Jan Holmgren

Jan Holmgren, MD, PhD

Scientific Advisor

Dr. Jan Holmgren, MD, PhD is Professor of Medical microbiology and immunology at University of Gothenburg, Sweden, a chair he took over in 1980 after Prof. Örjan Ouchterlony; he is also the Director of the Gothenberg University Vaccine Research Institute (GUVAX).

Dr. Holmgren has published more than 500 papers in the fields of microbiology, immunology and vaccinology, and he is an elected member of various societies and academies including the Swedish Royal Academy of Science and the Swedish Royal Academy of Engineering. He has also served on many national and international boards, e.g. the Board of Directors of the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation (Sweden), the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), and several international vaccine-related technical task forces or steering committees.



After completing his PhD thesis on urinary tract infection immunology in 1969, a large part of his research has been focused on the mechanisms of disease and immunity in cholera and other mucosal infections and on the development of mucosal vaccines. In his early work on cholera, Dr. Holmgren discovered, for instance, both the AB subunit structure and function of cholera toxin and the GM1 ganglioside as the cholera toxin receptor. 


Dr. Holmgren and his coworkers have also made significant contributions to mucosal immunology and to the development of mucosal vaccines and adjuvants. They have developed and taken the oral B subunit-whole cell cholera vaccine all the way from inception to an internationally widely registered product, developed and taken an oral ETEC vaccine to phase 3 trials, and have pioneered the development of methods for assessment of mucosal vaccine immunogenicity in humans.


In more basic aspects of mucosal vaccinology, Dr. Holmgren´s laboratory has made important contributions in mucosal adjuvant construction, in defining basic mechanisms of mucosal immune regulation, and in developing promising mucosal immunemodulating/tolerogenic vaccine therapies against autoimmune and allergic diseases, the latter was based on Dr. Holmgren and Cecil Czerkinsky´s discovery of cholera toxin B subunit as a uniquely efficient combined carrier and immunomodulator for inducing peripheral T cell tolerance to chemically or genetically conjugated tissue antigens or allergens.


Avijit Lahiri

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.


Anna Hultgårdh

Anna Hultgårdh Nilsson, PhD

Scientific Advisor

Dr. Anna Hultgårdh Nilsson is professor of vascular biology at Lund University, a position she holds since 2006. She was the chairman of the Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (STINT) and has chaired review committees in a number of other important funding bodies including the Swedish Research Council and the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research. In 2011, Professor Hultgårdh Nilsson co-founded Follicum AB and serves as the chair of the scientific advisory board. The company is based on the idea that certain modified protein can control the activity of hair follicles.



Professor Anna Hultgårdh Nilsson received her PhD in Medical Cell Biology from Karolinska Institute. After postdoc studies at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, University of California Los Angeles, she returned to Karolinska Institute to study the importance of the vascular smooth muscle cell in the onset of atherosclerosis. In 1998, Professor Hultgårdh Nilsson joined Lund University to focus her research in cell and molecular mechanisms in the atherosclerotic process and has published over 60 original papers in the field of atherosclerosis.


Gregory Schwartz

Gregory Schwartz, MD, PhD

Scientific Advisor

Gregory Schwartz is Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver, Colorado. He received MD and PhD degrees from Duke University, completed Residency and Chief Residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Colorado, followed by training in Cardiology at the University of California San Francisco, where he served as a faculty member in its Cardiovascular Research Institute for 11 years.



Dr. Schwartz directs a large animal cardiac physiology laboratory that has been funded by NIH and VA since 1988 and investigates questions related to myocardial energy metabolism and ischemic protection. Over the past 20 years, he has also led clinical trials evaluating lipid and metabolic interventions in coronary heart disease. These include the first placebo-controlled cardiovascular outcomes trial with a statin in patients with acute coronary syndrome.


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