Agostino Molteni, M.D., Ph.D.

Adjunct Professor, Professor - Pathology and Pharmacology, Director of Student Research, Professor Emeritus - Northwestern University
Department(s) of Pathology
UMKC School of Medicine
816-235-5604
M3-C12
Education and Background

M.D. - University of Milano
Ph.D. - State University of New York, Buffalo
Fellowship - University of Milano
Fellowship - State University of New York, Buffalo

Meet Agostino Molteni
How did you get started in research?

I became curious about hypertension while in residency at the University of Milano in 1957, where I observed incidences of hypertension in relation to the different diets of Italy’s various regions. A research fellowship brought me to the United States and the State University of New York, Buffalo. My work there and then at Northwestern University has looked at high blood pressure among many populations, including burn victims, diabetics, and mothers in pre-term births. It is a fascinating area, and I never tire of exploring it.

How did you end up at UMKC?

My wife and I had lived in the area in the 1970s. I was at KU Medical Center and she was on the UMKC faculty. We then moved to Chicago and were involved in academic research there for many years. At retirement age those tenured appointments expired, so we moved back to Kansas City to be close to our two sons and their families. But we found that we could not just stay at home: Too boring. So Dr. Richardson Noback, the dean of the School of Medicine, helped me find a research position at UMKC.

What do you enjoy outside of your research?

I study history, especially the history of various civilizations, and Latin literature. I spend time with my children and mentor my five granddaughters in how to think critically, ask questions and extend their knowledge beyond their college or high school programs. I like to travel and visit other universities. And I also like to watch soccer, especially Sporting KC.

Specialties and Research/Medical Interests

Cell Biology, Emergency Medicine, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedic Surgery, Pathology, Cardiology

Research Focus

Ways hypertension develops, particularly pulmonary hypertension

Molteni’s research often involves NEFAs — non-esterified fatty acids — and their role in high blood pressure. His studies have supported treatment for mild hypertension and looked at hypertension risks related to other medical conditions. He continues to do research while teaching and overseeing student research at the School of Medicine.

Research Summary

Dr. Molteni’s main research interest is the study of development of interstitial pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) in several models of experimental lung injury: exposure to radiation and hypoxia, administration of bleomycin and fat embolism syndrome. Also studied is the role played by the renin angiotensin system in the development of fibrosis and the antifibrotic protection of angiotensin converting inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers.

His projects are conducted in cooperation with Dr. Betty Herndon (UMKC SOM); Dr. T. McIff, Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery and Dr. A. Poisner, Dept. of Pharmacology, University of Kansas Medical Center, Dr. B. Uhal, Dept. of Physiology, Michigan State University, Dr. R. Baybutt, Dept. of Health Sciences, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL., Dr. G Van Den Heuvel, Dept. of Physiology, Eastern Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI.

Research Career Development Award, National Institutes of Health, 1972
Albert E. Lasker Award, 1980, to NHLBI sharing as principal investigator, Central Laboratory Hypertension Detection and Follow-up Program
Meritorious Service Award, Chicago Heart Association,1982
Clinical Chemists Recognition Award, 1983

Recent research includes the evaluation of exenatide in a rodent model of non-alcoholic liver steatosis, and in particular, the drug’s effect on the pancreas and the thyroid of these animals. This study was performed in cooperation with Dr. Herndon, Dr. Laura Alba, and others of the Dept. of Medicine, in the UMKC SOM. An additional study is the evaluation of pulmonary and cardiac damage in a model of Cux-1 mice expressing the cyclin kinase inhibitors P21 and P27 (Drs Baybutt and Van Den Heuvel).

Selected Publications

Has published more than 200 articles and book chapters and more than 370 presentations at national and international scientific meetings.

Curcumin Effects on Hepatic Steatosis and Histopathology in an Obese Mouse Model. British Journal of Medicine and Medical Research: 5(8): 1017-1023, 2015. Article no BJMMP.2015.112

Fat Embolism sensitizes rats to a “second hit” with LPS: an animal model of Pulmonary Fibrosis: Journal of Trauma and Acute Surgical Care; 783:552-557, 2015

Fat Embolism Syndrome following caesarean section in an obese patient and it’s similarity to an animal model of the same syndrome: a case report. Case reports in Clinical Pathology: Published online 3-3-2015, D01110.5430/crcp.vnp

NF-KB controls Resistance of Human Salivary Gland (HSG) Cells to apoptosis in an in vitro model of Sjögren syndrome. Open Journal of Rheumatology and Auto immune Diseases (OJRA): Vol 4 #3; ID: 2040 128, 2014

Mitigating effect of Captopril and Losartan on Lung Histopathology in a rat model of Fat Embolism. The Journal of Trauma 70 (5):1186-1191; 2011

Biochemical and Histological Effects of Exendin 4 (exenatide) in the rat pancreas. Diabetologia53(1):153-159; 2010

“Persistent and progressive fibrotic changes in a model of fat embolism.” Journal of Trauma 72 (h) 992-998, 2012

“Dietary flaxseed oil protects against bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis in rats.” Pulmonary Medicine, published on line, June 2012 10457031 doi 0.1155/2012/457031

“Urease and Helicobacter spp. Antigens in Pulmonary Granuloma” Journal of Comparative Pathology(2012) http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcpa.2012.06.011

“Effect of exendin (exenatide) on the thyroid and parathyroid gland in a rat model.” Eur. J., of Pharmacology 2012 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2012.07.024