Photo of Charareh Pourzand
  • 5 WEST 2.17

1990 …2018
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Personal profile

Research interests

The research program in my laboratory has its primary focus on characterization of iron-related early cellular events promoting various pathological types of damage to human skin cells either as a result of acute/chronic exposure to oxidizing agents such as ultraviolet A (UVA, 320-400nm) radiation and hydrogen peroxide or as a result of alteration in iron homeostasis observed in a series of iron-related skin disorders such as skin cancer and Psoriasis. The results obtained from these studies provide us with valuable knowledge to design a series of synthetic small molecules with iron chelation and antioxidant properties that may be used as therapeutic tools to prevent the promotion or progression of such disorders.

Current research in my laboratory focuses on:

Design and study of novel ‘light-activated caged-iron chelators’

We have developed a series of novel light-activated ‘caged’ iron chelators that minimize the side effects of prolonged siderophore exposure. These compounds are inactive due to temporary blockade of the iron binding site and only become activated upon exposure to an external light source. Current research involves the evaluation of both photoprotective and therapeutic potential of CICs in both monolayer and organotypic (artificial) three dimensional skin cultures.

Design and study of novel ‘organelle-targeted’ iron sensors/chelators

Recent studies of a range of human disorders as well as cellular studies with environmental oxidizing agents such as UVA have indicated that mitochondrial and lysosomal redox active and chelatable labile iron plays a key role in conferring cellular sensitivity to oxidative damage and the resulting pathologies and cell death. Iron chelators that target specifically the mitochondrial and lysosomal iron could therefore be beneficial both as preventive and therapeutic agents. Current research involves the evaluation of the exact role of subcellular labile iron distribution (or misdistribution) in oxidative injuries and iron-related disorders.

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Iron Medicine & Life Sciences
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Chelation Chemical Compounds

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Projects 2002 2018

Iron chelation and skin ageing

Eggleston, I., Pourzand, C. & Gunn, D.

Project: Research councilIndividual grant

chelating agents
skin (animal)

Light-activated caged iron chelators for the therapy of age-related macular degeneration

Eggleston, I. & Pourzand, C.


Project: Research councilInternally Funded Research

Research Output 1990 2016

2 Citations

A powerful mitochondria-targeted iron chelator affords high photoprotection against solar ultraviolet A radiation

Reelfs, O., Abbate, V., Hider, R. C. & Pourzand, C., Aug 2016, In : Journal Of Investigative Dermatology. 136, 8, p. 1692-1700

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

Characterisation Of A Novel Hexadentate Iron Chelator For Skin Photoprotection

Reelfs, O., Abbate, V., Hider, R. C. & Pourzand, C., 2016.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Clinical Iron Chelators For Skin Photoprotection As Light-Activated Caged Iron Chelators

Houshmandyar, S., Reelfs, O., Radka, T., Eggleston, I. & Pourzand, C., 2016.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Design of novel fluorescent mitochondria-targeted peptides with iron selective sensing activity

Hider, R. C., Abbate, V., Reelfs, O. & Pourzand, C., 2016, In : American Journal of Hematology. 91, 3, p. E39-E39

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


A Comparative study of the antiproliferative activity of iron chelators PIH, SIH and their light-activated caged derivatives in skin cells

Author: Aroun, A., 1 Nov 2010

Supervisor: Pourzand, C. (Supervisor) & Reelfs, O. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


Improving the Efficiency of Aminolevulinate-Photodynamic Therapy of Skin Cells by Combining UVA Irradiation and Potent Iron Chelating Agents

Author: Radka, T., 24 Feb 2014

Supervisor: Pourzand, C. (Supervisor) & Eggleston, I. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


Targeted dendrimeric prodrugs for 5-Aminolaevulinic acid photodynamic therapy

Author: Tewari, K. M., 23 Nov 2016

Supervisor: Eggleston, I. (Supervisor) & Pourzand, C. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


The role of iron in rheumatoid arthritis

Author: Averill, A., 1 Aug 2008

Supervisor: Pourzand, C. (Supervisor) & Hall, N. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


Ultraviolet A split-dose therapy, a novel approach to improve the aminolevulinate-based photodynamic therapy of skin lesions

Author: Radka, T., 1 Sep 2010

Supervisor: Pourzand, C. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisMPhil