Alan N. Schechter, M.D.

Senior Investigator

Molecular Medicine Branch


Building 10, Room 9N314B
10 Center Dr
Bethesda, MD 20814

+1 301 496 5408

Research Topics

Studying the interactions of tissues, especially blood, and its several types of cells and hemoglobin, with the recently discovered signaling molecule nitric oxide (NO) should provide new information about normal and abnormal physiology and potential treatment of several diseases.

Current Research

Our research program has been focused on the interaction of NO and hemoglobin, with the goal of understanding how NO may be transported by blood and thus act at distal sites, opening up its use as a pharmacological agent. This work has the potential for developing therapies for a variety of ischemic diseases, as well as sickle cell anemia and related hemoglobinopathies in which blood flow is impaired. New research projects involve studies of the pathophysiological role of cell-free hemoglobin, cell signaling in the NO pathway, the effects of nitrite and NO on platelet function and the role of nitrate ions in muscle.

Applying our Research

This research may give us clues regarding how to develop new therapies for several common diseases, as well as improve our understanding and treatment of the genetic anemias.

Need for Further Study

The control of blood flow in human beings, both normally and in disease states, requires further study.


  • Fellow of the AAAS
  • American Society of Hematology
  • American Association of Physicians
  • American Society of Clinical Investigation
  • Resident, Albert Einstein Medical College, 1963-1965
  • M.D., Columbia University, 1963
  • B.A., Cornell University, 1959

Selected Publications

  1. Park JW, Piknova B, Jenkins A, Hellinga D, Parver LM, Schechter AN. Potential roles of nitrate and nitrite in nitric oxide metabolism in the eye. Sci Rep. 2020;10(1):13166.

  2. Wylie LJ, Park JW, Vanhatalo A, Kadach S, Black MI, Stoyanov Z, Schechter AN, Jones AM, Piknova B. Human skeletal muscle nitrate store: influence of dietary nitrate supplementation and exercise. J Physiol. 2019;597(23):5565-5576.

  3. Srihirun S, Park JW, Teng R, Sawaengdee W, Piknova B, Schechter AN. Nitrate uptake and metabolism in human skeletal muscle cell cultures. Nitric Oxide. 2020;94:1-8.

  4. Piknova B, Park JW, Kwan Jeff Lam K, Schechter AN. Nitrate as a source of nitrite and nitric oxide during exercise hyperemia in rat skeletal muscle. Nitric Oxide. 2016;55-56:54-61.

  5. Piknova B, Park JW, Swanson KM, Dey S, Noguchi CT, Schechter AN. Skeletal muscle as an endogenous nitrate reservoir. Nitric Oxide. 2015;47:10-16.

This page was last updated on June 3rd, 2021