Laboratory of Lipid Metabolism by 
Cytochrome P450 epoxygenases 

Three pathways of eicosanoid synthesis. 
(Modified from Dr. Guodong Zhang’s laboratory website)

Dietary consumption of ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids changes the overall physiology in animals and humans. One of the pathways to change the overall physiology is the conversion of ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids into epoxide derivatives via the enzymes in the epoxygenase (EPOX) pathway. Most of these epoxides are anti-inflammatory and vasodilatory in nature. The biochemistry of epoxygenases with respect to their complex interactions with ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids is largely unknown. 

The prime research direction in our laboratory is to elucidate the biochemical mechanism of the enzymes in the EPOX pathway and to study the biological role of the novel anti-inflammatory ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acid epoxides. (Work is funded by NIH R01 from National Institute of General Medical Sciences) and American Heart Association grant. 

Another important research direction in the laboratory is the study of endocannabinoid metabolism by EPOX enzymes leading to the discovery of novel endocannabinoid epoxides that are anti-inflammatory and vasodilatory. This work is funded by NIH R01 grant NIGMS and NIH R03 grant from NIDA (National Institute of Drug Abuse). 

Recent research directions in the laboratory is to study the mechanism of cannabinoids by cytochrome P450s to give rise to novel cannabinoid metabolites with altered pharmacological properties. 




• NIH R01 Grant - Biochemical Mechanisms of Cytochrome P450 epoxygenases 

• NIH R03 Grant - Discovery of Endocannabinoid Epoxides as Anti-inflammatory Compounds

• NIH Study Section, MSFA (Ad Hoc) 

• National Scientist Development Award, American Heart Association (2015)

• Editorial Board, ChemistrySelect 2016

• NIEHS Travel Award - Winter Eicosanoid Meeting 2014

• Moog Lecture Series, Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute

• ACS Travel Award

• Outstanding researcher award for postdoctoral research by NSF-NU-NSEC

• FMC Corporation Graduate Fellowship, Princeton

• Dean's List for Honorific Fellowship, Princeton

• Princeton Graduate Fellowship (Science and Engineering First Year) 

• CSIR-JRF Fellowship, India


Dr. Das received her undergraduate degree in Chemistry from St. Stephen College, Delhi, followed by masters at Indian Institute of Technology (I.I.T.) Kanpur. She received her Ph.D. in Chemistry with Prof. Michael Hecht at Princeton University. She further did her postdoctoral research with Prof. Stephen Sligar at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign (UIUC)

In 2012, Dr. Das started her own research group in the Department of Comparative Biosciences at UIUC. She is an affiliate faculty in the Department of Biochemistry, Department of Bioengineering, Center for Biophysics and Quantitative Biology, Neuroscience Program, Division of Nutritional Sciences and Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology. 

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