Accessible Search Form           Advanced Search

Toren Finkel, M.D., Ph.D.

To arrange an interview, please contact the NHLBI Communications Office at 301-496-4236 or

Portrait of Toren Finkel
Toren Finkel, M.D., Ph.D.


Toren Finkel, M.D., Ph.D., joined the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) in 1992 as Investigator in the Cardiology Branch. He is currently Chief of the Center for Molecular Medicine in the Institute's Division of Intramural Research.

Dr. Finkel’s research is focused on the role of cellular metabolism and oxidative stress in aging and age-related diseases.  He became interested in oxidative stress through an early, counterintuitive discovery that hydrogen peroxide – a reactive oxygen species (ROS) – could act as an intracellular signaling molecule when activated by certain growth factors. An interest in aging and metabolism has led to four related research avenues in his laboratory:  (1) oxidative homeostasis in stem cell biology, (2) the use of cellular senescence as a model for aging, (3) autophagy in aging and age-related diseases, and (4) interrogating pathways identified in lower organisms to understand their role in mammalian aging.

Dr. Finkel received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA in 1986. That same year, he received his Ph.D. in Biophysics from the Harvard University School of Arts and Sciences. He graduated summa cum laude in 1979 with a B.S. in Physics from the University of Maryland, College Park. Dr. Finkel pursued a Fellowship in Cardiology at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital from 1989-1992. He conducted his Internship and Residency in Internal Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1986-1987 and 1987-1989, respectively.

Dr. Finkel is the author or coauthor of over 80 publications. He has edited one book and is Editor-in-Chief of Drug Discovery Today-Disease Mechanisms. Dr. Finkel also is the Associate Editor of Circulation Research and is on the editorial boards of several peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. Finkel In the News

November 25, 2013 : AAAS News
AAAS council elects 388 new AAAS Fellows
NHLBI intramural investigators Toren Finkel and Herbert Geller were among the 388 newly-elected AAAS Fellows who were recognized by their peers for their efforts to advance science or its applications. The new AAAS Fellows will be honored at the AAAS Fellows Forum on Saturday, 15 February during the AAAS Annual Meeting in Chicago, where they will receive a certificate and a blue and gold rosette as a symbol of their distinguished accomplishments

two mice side by side

August 29, 2013
Single gene change increases mouse lifespan by 20 percent
By lowering the expression of a single gene, researchers at the National Institutes of Health have extended the average lifespan of a group of mice by about 20 percent. The research team targeted a gene called mTOR, which is involved in metabolism and energy balance, and may be connected with the increased lifespan associated with caloric restriction.

View all Dr. Finkel in the news articles

Last Updated: April 24, 2012