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Ferid Murad

Born: 14-Sep-1936
Birthplace: Whiting, IN

Gender: Male
Religion: Anglican/Episcopalian
Race or Ethnicity: Middle Eastern
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Scientist, Doctor

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Nitric oxide as a cardiovascular signal

In 1977, Ferid Murad showed that nitroglycerin and other similar heart drugs increase the diameter of blood vessels. Robert F. Furchgott explained that this effect was caused by a mysterious endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF), and several years later, Furchgott, Murad, and Louis J. Ignarro -- all working independently of each other -- showed that nitric oxide in the bloodstream triggers this response. For this work, all three men shared the 1998 Nobel Prize in Medicine. In addition to its use in cardiovascular drugs, Murad's work on nitric oxide led to the development of Viagra. Nitric oxide is the only gas known to act as a signaling molecule in the body, and regulates activities of the brain, intestines, kidneys, liver, lungs, stomach, and genitals.

Murad left academia to oversee research at Abbott Laboratories in the late 1980s. He later left Abbott to start his own biotech company, Molecular Geriatrics Corporation, which floundered financially before he left (and is now known as Applied NeuroSolutions). He has since returned to campus life, working at the University of Texas.

His father, an Albanian shepherd who became an American restaurateur, was Muslim. His mother was Baptist, he was raised Catholic, and baptized Episcopalian in college.

Father: Jabir Murat Ejupi (a/k/a John Murad, shepherd, b. 1892, d. 1976)
Mother: Henrietta Josephine Bowman Murad (b. 1918, m. 1935)
Brother: John Abderhaman Murad
Brother: Turhon Allen Murad
Wife: Carol Ann Leopold (hospital clerical worker, m. 21-Jun-1958)

    University: BS, DePauw University (1958)
    Scholar: Indiana University
    Medical School: MD, Case Western Reserve University
    University: PhD Pharmacology, Case Western Reserve University
    Teacher: Cardiology, National Institutes of Health (1967-70)
    Teacher: Pharmacology, University of Virginia (1970-75)
    Professor: Pharmacology, University of Virginia (1975-81)
    Professor: Medicine and Pharmacology, Stanford University (1981-88)
    Professor: Pharmacology, Northwestern University (1988)
    Professor: Physiology and Medicine, University of Texas at Houston (1997-)

    Lasker Award 1996
    Nobel Prize for Medicine 1998 (with Robert F. Furchgott and Louis J. Ignarro)
    Federation of American Scientists Board of Sponsors
    Phi Beta Kappa Society
    Massachusetts General Hospital Internship (1965-67)
    Abbott Laboratories VP (1988-93)
    Albanian Ancestry Paternal

Author of books:
Nitric Oxide: Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Therapeutic Implications (1995, with Louis J. Ignarro)
The Wellness Solution (2007, with Edward A Taub and David Oliphant)

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