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Patricia W. Finn, MD. Department Chair

© Copyright 2014 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois

Irena Levitan, Ph.D.

Academic Title: Associate Professor of Medicine, Pharmacology and Bioengineering

Administrative Positions:

Division: Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep and Allergy Medicine

Location: 909 S. Wolcott Ave., COMRB 3097 (MC 719), Chicago, IL 60612

Phone: (312)996-0441 (Office), 413-1400 (Lab) Fax: (312)996-7193



Ph.D., Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel (1993)

Postdoctoral Fellow, Medical College of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (1993-1998)

Faculty Positions:

Clinical Interests

Research Interests

Selected Publications

  1. Tikku S, Epshtein Y, Collins H, Travis AJ, Rothblat GH and Levitan I. Relationship between Kir2.1/Kir2.3 activity and their distributions between cholesterol-rich and cholesterol-poor membrane domains. Am. J. Physiol. Cell. Physiol. 293(1):C440-50, 2007.
  2. Kowalsky GB, Byfield FJ, Levitan I. oxLDL facilitates flow-induced realignment of aortic endothelial cells. Am. J. Physiol. Cell. Physiol. 295(2):C332-40, 2008.
  3. Levitan IB. miXED messages in ion channel modulation. Neuron. 59(2):188-9, 2008.
  4. Epshtein Y, Chopra AP, Rosenhouse-Dantsker A, Kowalsky GB, Logothetis DE and Levitan I. Identification of a C-terminus domain critical for the sensitivity of Kir2.1 to cholesterol. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 12;106(19):8055-60, 2009.
  5. Singh DK, Rosenhouse-Dantsker A, Nichols CG, Enkvetchakul D and Levitan I. Direct regulation of prokaryotic Kir channel by cholesterol. J. Biol. Chem. Oct 30;284(44):30727-36, 2009.
  6. Shentu TP, Titushkin I, Singh DK, Gooch KJ, Subbaiah PV, Cho M and Levitan I. oxLDL-induced decrease in lipid order of membrane domains is inversely correlated with endothelial stiffness and network formation. Am. J. Physiol. Cell. Physiol. 299(2):C218-29, 2010.
  7. Thomas J, Epshtein Y, Chopra A, Ordog B, Ghassemi M, Christman JW, Nattel S, Cook JL and Levitan I. Anthrax lethal factor activates K+ channels to induce IL-1β secretion in macrophages. J. Immunol. 1;186(9):5236-43, 2011.
  8. Singh DK, Shentu TP, Enkvetchakul D and Levitan I. Cholesterol regulates prokaryotic Kir channel by direct binding to channel protein. Biochim. Biophys. Acta. 1808(10):2527-33, 2011.
  9. Deng W, Bukiya AN, Rodríguez-Menchaca AA, Zhang Z, Baumgarten CM, Logothetis DE, Levitan I and Rosenhouse-Dantsker A. Hypercholesterolemia induces up-regulation of KACh cardiac currents via a mechanism independent of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate and Gβγ. J. Biol. Chem. 10;287(7):4925-35, 2012.
  10. Shentu TP, Singh DK, Oh MJ, Sun S, Sadaat L, Makino A, Mazzone T, Subbaiah PV, Cho M and Levitan I. The role of oxysterols in control of endothelial stiffness. J. Lipid Res. 53(7):1348-58, 2012.
  11. Rosenhouse-Dantsker A, Noskov S, Han H, Adney SK, Tang QY, Rodríguez-Menchaca AA, Kowalsky GB, Petrou VI, Osborn CV, Logothetis DE and Levitan I. Distant cytosolic residues mediate a two-way molecular switch that controls the modulation of inwardly rectifying potassium (Kir) channels by cholesterol and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PI(4,5)P(2)). J. Biol. Chem. 287(48): 40266-78, 2012.