Dr. Emmanuel (Manu) Buys, Ph.D., is a molecular biologist who studies cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)-signaling in a variety of (patho-) physiological processes both in animal models and in human subjects. His ultimate goal is to develop and translate reagents that stimulate cGMP signaling as therapeutics for a wide range of diseases (including cardiovascular disease and glaucoma).
During his graduate studies, Dr. Buys became interested in nitric oxide (NO) soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC)-cGMP signaling, a pathway implicated in and a potential therapeutic target for many diseases, and generated mice deficient in sGC (sGCKO mice). After obtaining his PhD from Ghent University, Belgium (in the lab of Prof. Dr. Peter Brouckaert), he joined the MGH Cardiovascular Research Center (under the mentorship of the late Dr. Kenneth Bloch) to study the cardiovascular phenotype of the sGCKO mice in murine models of sepsis, myocardial infarction, and pulmonary hypertension. Following his recruitment to the Anesthesia Center for Critical Care Research (under the directorship of Dr. Warren Zapol), first as an Instructor and later as an Assistant Professor, he acquired independent funding for 2 main projects: 1: to gain insight in the role of cGMP signaling in the regulation of blood pressure, thereby impacting bench-to-bedside translation of existing sGC activating compounds and informing the further development of anti-hypertensive drugs such as custom made anti-miRs that de-repress key genes in the cGMP signaling system (e.g. NPPA which encodes atrial natriuretic peptide). And 2: to study the role of NO-cGMP signaling in the development of open angle glaucoma, a project currently funded by the NIH National Eye Institute.
In other collaborative projects, Dr. Buys continues to characterize the role of cGMP signaling in cardiac dysfunction associated with systemic inflammation, myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity, pulmonary hypertension, gastro-intestinal motility, brain and lung development, renal function and erectile dysfunction. His background as an expert in NO-sGC-cGMP signaling and as a molecular biologist with experience in animal models of human physiology and disease led him to serve as a co-PI with Dr. Warren Zapol, Dr. Allyson Hindle, and Dr. Daniel Costa on a project (funded by the National Science Foundation, and including a deployment to McMurdo Antarctica to collect biologically relevant samples) to test the hypothesis that altered NO-cGMP signaling underlies the capability of Antarctic Weddell seals to withstand severe bouts of hypoxia as they dive for prolonged periods of time.