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Lab personnel

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Research interests

  • Molecular mechanisms involved in the development of cardiovascular complications in diabetes.
  • Role of microRNAs in cardiovascular diseases.
  • Development of novel genetic and stem cell therapies for the treatment of ischemic and non-ischemic cardiovascular complications


microRNA; gene therapy; stem cells; chronic heart failure; Diabetes Mellitus; cardiomyopathy; tissue engineering.

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  • Pathological role of microRNAs in the development of diabetic cardiomyopathy
  • Circulating microRNAs as potential biomarkers for early diagnosis of cardiovascular complications
  • Gender differences in diabetic heart – why females are more prone to complications
  • Investigating the role of suicidal autophagy in diabetic hearts
  • Treatment of ischemic hearts with resident cardiac stem cells
  • Development of engineered heart tissue using cardiac and mesenchymal stem cells

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Current funding

  • 2013–2015 Lottery Health Board project grant
  • 2013–2015 New Zealand Society for the Study of Diabetes project (Sanofi) grant
  • 2013–2014 Maurice & Phyllis Paykel Trust grant-in-ai
  • 2013–2014 University of Otago research grant
  • 2013–2014 Otago School of Medical Sciences Dean's Bequest grant
  • 2012–2013 Heart Foundation New Zealand small project grant
  • 2012–2013 Otago Medical Research Foundation project grant

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Previous funding

  • 2010–2012 British Heart Foundation project grant
  • 2007–2010 Diabetes UK project grant
  • 2004–2007 Ministry of Science and Education, Japan
  • 2002–2004 Industrial grant with Mitsubishi Pharmaceuticals, Japan

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  • Associate Professor Patrick Manning, Department of Medicine, University of Otago
  • Professor Vicky Cameron, Christchurch Heart Institute, University of Otago
  • Dr Andrew Bahn, Department of Physiology, University of Otago
  • Professor Paolo Madeddu, Bristol Heart Institute, University of Bristol, United Kingdom
  • Professor Costanza Emanueli, Bristol Heart Institute, University of Bristol, United Kingdom
  • Professor Saadeh Suleiman, Department of Cardiovascular Physiology, University of Bristol, United Kingdom
  • Dr Antonio Beltrami, Department of Pathology, University of Udine, Italy
  • Dr Daniela Cesselli, Department of Pathology, University of Udine, Italy
  • Professor Sato Takayuki, Department of Physiology, Kochi University, Japan
  • Dr Kakinuma Yoshihiko, Department of Physiology, Kochi University, Japan
  • Professor Ando Motonori, Laboratory of Cell Physiology, Department of Science Education, Okayama University, Japan

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Ghosh, N., Fenton, S., van Hout, I., Jones, G., Coffey, S., Williams, M. J. A., Sugunesegran, R., Parry, D., … Schwenke, D. O., Chatterjee, A., & Katare, R. (2022). Therapeutic knockdown of miR-320 improves deteriorated cardiac function in a pre-clinical model of non-ischemic diabetic heart disease. Molecular Therapy: Nucleic Acids. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.omtn.2022.07.007

Chandrasekera, D., & Katare, R. (2022). Exosomal microRNAs in diabetic heart disease. Cardiovascular Diabetology, 21, 122. doi: 10.1186/s12933-022-01544-2

Yee-Goh, A. S., Yamauchi, A., van Hout, I., Bellae Papannarao, J., Sugunesegran, R., Parry, D., Davis, P., & Katare, R. (2022). Cardiac progenitor cells and adipocyte stem cells from same patients exhibit in vitro functional differences. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 23, 5588. doi: 10.3390/ijms23105588

Satthenapalli, R., Lee, S., Bellae Papannarao, J., Hore, T. A., Chakraborty, A., Jones, P. P., Lamberts, R. R., & Katare, R. (2022). Stage-specific regulation of signalling pathways to differentiate pluripotent stem cells to cardiomyocytes with ventricular lineage. Stem Cell Research & Therapy, 13(1), 185. doi: 10.1186/s13287-022-02845-9

Avolio, E., Katare, R., Thomas, A. C., Caporali, A., Schwenke, D., Carrabba, M., … Madeddu, P. (2022). Cardiac pericyte reprogramming by MEK inhibition promotes arteriologenesis and angiogenesis of the ischemic heart. Journal of Clinical Investigation. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1172/jci152308

Waddingham, M. T., Tsuchimochi, H., Sonobe, T., Asano, R., Jin, H., Ow, C. P. C., Schwenke, D. O., Katare, R., … Pearson, J. T. (2022). Using synchrotron radiation imaging techniques to elucidate the actions of hexarelin in the heart of small animal models. Frontiers in Physiology, 12, 766818. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2021.766818

Khadka, P., Sinha, S., Tucker, I. G., Dummer, J., Hill, P. C., Katare, R., & Das, S. C. (2021). High-dose inhaled rifampicin powder formulations: Preparation, in vitro characterization and in vivo evaluation. Proceedings of the Drug Delivery to the Lungs (DDL) Conference (Vol. 32). Retrieved from

Khadka, P., Sinha, S., Hill, P. C., Dummer, J., Tucker, I. G., Katare, R. G., & Das, S. C. (2021). In vitro and in vivo evaluation of high-dose inhaled rifampicin powder formulations for tuberculosis treatment. New Zealand Medical Journal, 134(1547), (pp. 139). Retrieved from

Hebbard, C., Lee, B., Katare, R., & Garikipati, V. N. S. (2021). Diabetes, heart failure, and COVID-19: An update. Frontiers in Physiology, 12, 706185. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2021.706185

Bellae Papannarao, J., Schwenke, D. O., Manning, P., & Katare, R. (2021). Upregulated miR-200c is associated with downregulation of the functional receptor for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 ACE2 in individuals with obesity [Brief communication]. International Journal of Obesity. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1038/s41366-021-00984-2

Reily-Bell, M., Bahn, A., & Katare, R. (2021). Reactive oxygen species-mediated diabetic heart disease: Mechanisms and therapies. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1089/ars.2021.0098

Coffey, S., Dixit, P., Saw, E. L., Babakr, A. A., van Hout, I., Galvin, I. F., Saxena, P., Bunton, R. W., Davis, P. J., Lamberts, R. R., Katare, R., & Williams, M. J. A. (2021). Thiamine increases resident endoglin positive cardiac progenitor cells and atrial contractile force in humans: A randomised controlled trial. International Journal of Cardiology, 341, 70-73. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcard.2021.08.039

Kovanur Sampath, K., Mani, R., Katare, R., Neale, J., Cotter, J., & Tumilty, S. (2021). Thoracic spinal manipulation effect on neuroendocrine response in people with Achilles tendinopathy: A randomized crossover trial. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2021.06.001

Bir, S., Chandrasekera, D., Van Hout, I., Lequeux, S., Coffey, S., Bunton, R. W., Davis, P., Williams, M. J. A., & Katare, R. (2021). Use of exosomes to deliver proangiogenic microRNAs and reduce the microvascular complications of diabetes mellitus. Proceedings of the 44th New Zealand Society for the Study of Diabetes (NZSSD) Annual Scientific Meeting. Retrieved from

Chamorro-Jorganes, A., Sweaad, W. K., Katare, R., Besnier, M., Anwar, M., Beazley-Long, N., … Chandrasekera, D., … Emanueli, C. (2021). METTL3 regulates angiogenesis by modulating let-7e-5p and miRNA-18a-5p expression in endothelial cells. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, & Vascular Biology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1161/atvbaha.121.316180

Purvis, N., Kumari, S., Chandrasekera, D., Bellae Papannarao, J., Gandhi, S., van Hout, I., Coffey, S., Bunton, R., Sugunesegran, R., Parry, D., Davis, P., Williams, M. J. A., Bahn, A., & Katare, R. (2021). Diabetes induces dysregulation of microRNAs associated with survival, proliferation and self-renewal in cardiac progenitor cells. Diabetologia, 64, 1422-1435. doi: 10.1007/s00125-021-05405-7

Klionsky, D. J., Abdel-Aziz, A. K., Abdelfatah, S., Abdellatif, M., Abdoli, A., Abel, S., … Hughes, S. M., … Katare, R. G., … Tong, C.-K. (2021). Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy (4th edition). Autophagy. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/15548627.2020.1797280

Khadka, P., Sinha, S., Tucker, I. G., Dummer, J., Hill, P. C., Katare, R., & Das, S. C. (2021). Pharmacokinetics of rifampicin after repeated intra-tracheal administration of amorphous and crystalline powder formulations to Sprague Dawley rats. European Journal of Pharmaceutics & Biopharmaceutics, 162, 1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpb.2021.02.011

Saw, E. L., Pearson, J. T., Schwenke, D. O., Munasinghe, P. E., Tsuchimochi, H., Rawal, S., Coffey, S., … Bunton, R., Van Hout, I., … Williams, M. J. A., … Fronius, M., & Katare, R. (2021). Activation of the cardiac non-neuronal cholinergic system prevents the development of diabetes-associated cardiovascular complications. Cardiovascular Diabetology, 20, 50. doi: 10.1186/s12933-021-01231-8

Daniels, L. J., Annandale, M., Koutsifeli, P., Li, X., Bussey, C. T., van Hout, I., Bunton, R. W., … Coffey, S., Katare, R., Lamberts, R. R., … Mellor, K. M. (2021). Elevated myocardial fructose and sorbitol levels are associated with diastolic dysfunction in diabetic patients, and cardiomyocyte lipid inclusions in vitro [Brief communication]. Nutrition & Diabetes, 11, 8. doi: 10.1038/s41387-021-00150-7

Khadka, P., Sinha, S., Tucker, I. G., Dummer, J., Hill, P. C., Katare, R., & Das, S. C. (2021). Studies on the safety and the tissue distribution of inhaled high-dose amorphous and crystalline rifampicin in a rat model. International Journal of Pharmaceutics, 597, 120345. doi: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2021.120345

Avolio, E., Mangialardi, G., Slater, S. C., Alvino, V. V., Gu, Y., Cathery, W., … Katare, R., … Madeddu, P. (2021). Secreted Protein Acidic and Cysteine Rich matricellular protein is enriched in the bioactive fraction of the human vascular pericyte secretome. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 34(15), 1151-1164. doi: 10.1089/ars.2019.7969

Avolio, E., Katare, R., Thomas, A. C., Caporali, A., Schwenke, D., Meloni, M., … Madeddu, P. (2020). Cardiac pericytes can be pharmacologically redirected towards a smooth muscle phenotype to enhance the revascularisation of the ischemic heart. European Journal of Heart Failure, 23(Suppl. 1), (pp. 13). doi: 10.1002/ejhf.2100

McQuaig, R., Dixit, P., Yamauchi, A., Van Hout, I., Bellae Papannarao, J., Bunton, R., Parry, D., … Katare, R. (2020). Combination of cardiac progenitor cells from the right atrium and left ventricle exhibits synergistic paracrine effects in vitro. Cell Transplantation. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/0963689720972328

Neale, J. P. H., Pearson, J. T., Thomas, K. N., Tsuchimochi, H., Hosoda, H., Kojima, M., … Jones, G. T., Denny, A. P., Daniels, L. J., Chandrasekera, D., Liu, P., van Rij, A. M., Katare, R., & Schwenke, D. O. (2020). Dysregulation of ghrelin in diabetes impairs the vascular reparative response to hindlimb ischemia in a mouse model; Clinical relevance to peripheral artery disease. Scientific Reports, 10, 13651. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-70391-6

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