Antoni Paul, PhD

Associate Professor
Molecular and Cellular Physiology

Areas of Study

Metabolic diseases


  • Baylor College of Medicine2005Postdoctoral training
  • Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Spain2000PhD


The Paul lab's main interest is on the study of metabolic diseases, including diabetes and insulin resistance, but principally atherosclerosis. The lab is deeply interested in understanding the regulation of vascular sterol homeostasis, particularly how sterol storage and release in and out of lipid droplets affects foam cell biology and atherosclerosis development. We have identified novel candidate lipid droplet regulators through 1) broad transcriptomics of arterial foam cells in response to different diets, 2) proteomic analyses of lipid droplet fractions, and 3) analysis of stable and unstable regions of endarterectomy specimens.

The two main projects in the lab are:

  1. Regulation of foam biology and atherosclerosis development by lipid droplet-associated hydrolase (LDAH). LDAH is a novel lipase/esterase that we identified in a proteomic analysis of cholesterol-laden macrophages. Studies in human endarterectomy specimens show that LDAH's levels are reduced in unstable fragments of endarterectomy specimens. Preliminary data in transgenic and knockout models show that LDAH reduces atherosclerosis development and promotes stable lesion architectures. We are now investigating the underlying mechanisms.
  2. Clock modulation in circadian desynchrony induced diabetes and atherovascular disease - mechanisms and interventions. Shift workers have a much higher incidence on insulin resistance, diabetes, and atherovascular events. Unfortunately, there are no proven interventions that prevent these deleterious effects, and as a 24-hour society we cannot eliminate shift work. To understand mechanistic links between circadian derangements and cardiometabolic diseases, and to test preventive environmental (light) and pharmacological strategies for high-risk populations,  we have put together an interdisciplinary team with and complementary expertise in light and circadian biology (Dr. Mariana Figueiro, Mount Sinai), molecular clock and diabetes (Dr. Vijay Yechoor, University of Pittsburgh), and atherosclerosis (Dr. Antoni Paul, Albany Medical College).


Xiong X, Lin Y, Lee J, Paul A, Yechoor V, Figueiro M, Ma K. Chronic circadian shift leads to adipose tissue inflammation and fibrosis. Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2021 Feb 5;521:111110. doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2020.111110. Epub 2020 Dec 4. PubMed PMID: 33285245; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7799174. 

Figueiro MG, Goo YH, Hogan R, Plitnick B, Lee JK, Jahangir K, Moulik M, Yechoor VK, Paul A. Light-Dark Patterns Mirroring Shift Work Accelerate Atherosclerosis and Promote Vulnerable Lesion Phenotypes. J Am Heart Assoc. 2021 Jan 19;10(2):e018151. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.120.018151. Epub 2021 Jan 6. PubMed PMID: 33401929. 

Dubey R, Stivala CE, Nguyen HQ, Goo YH, Paul A, Carette JE, Trost BM, Rohatgi R. Lipid droplets can promote drug accumulation and activation.Nat Chem Biol. 2020 Feb;16(2):206-213. doi: 10.1038/s41589-019-0447-7. Epub 2020 Jan 13. PubMed PMID: 31932720; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6989039. 

Paul A, Lydic TA, Hogan R, Goo YH. Cholesterol Acceptors Regulate the Lipidome of Macrophage Foam Cells. Int J Mol Sci. 2019 Aug 2;20(15). doi: 10.3390/ijms20153784. PubMed PMID: 31382484; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6695943. 

Goo YH, Son SH, Paul A. Lipid Droplet-Associated Hydrolase Promotes Lipid Droplet Fusion and Enhances ATGL Degradation and Triglyceride Accumulation. Sci Rep. 2017 Jun 2;7(1):2743. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-02963-y. PubMed PMID: 28578400; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5457427. 

View Antoni Paul's articles on the National Institute of Health's PubMed website.