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Irina Radu

Date published: February 20, 2024

February Postdoctoral Spotlight: Irina Radu, MD, MHA

This month, we feature Irina Radu, MD, MHA, as our Postdoc Spotlight. Dr. Radu is a postdoc research fellow in the lab of Dr. Khanh-Van Tran in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and is the co-president of the UMass Chan Postdoctoral Association. 


Focsani (Romania) 

What is your research focus?  
I am researching nonplatelet thromboxane generation, which is a novel marker for cardiovascular diseases, morbidity, and mortality. My focus extends to exploring its intricate connections with various cardiac and neurologic pathologies, progressing the scientific knowledge toward understanding the “Holy Grail” of many diseases- endothelial dysfunction. I also recently joined Dr. Tran’s lab and began sharing her passion for lipid management and the role of visceral fat. 

Why did you choose UMass for your postdoctoral studies?  
I am fortunate to have encountered remarkable mentors such as Dr. Jeffrey Rade, a distinguished professor of medicine and the director of Thrombosis and Vascular Biology Research, and Dr. Carolina Ionete, an esteemed professor of Neurology and the director of the Multiple Sclerosis Center. Their guidance has fueled my curiosity in understanding the pathophysiology of cardiovascular, neurovascular, and neuroinflammatory diseases in recognizing patterns significant for their use in preventive medicine. 

Coming from a background as a noninvasive cardiologist trained in Romania, I approach research, academic, and clinical development with the enthusiasm of a curious child.  

To me, UMass Chan has proven to be the ideal environment for growth, a place where you can find support for your innovative ideas and where you can transform dreams into reality. The UMass Chan ethos encapsulated in the “Advancing Together” motto resonates with me deeply. It contains the spirit of a cohesive team within a well-structured organization, which instilled in me a sense of belonging since my initial steps into the institution in 2019. 

Are you involved in any other groups or activities at UMass Chan that you’d like to highlight?  
I currently hold the position of co-president of the UMass Chan Postdoctoral Association (UMPA), an organization dedicated to advocating for the needs and interests of the UMass Chan Postdoctoral scholars. In addition, I serve as an Institutional Review Board- Scientific Committee member, ensuring the integrity and ethical standards of research at our highly esteemed institution. Furthermore, I actively participate in fostering Restorative Justice in Academic Medicine alongside the Diversity and Inclusion Office in my role as a facilitator. In my commitment to community engagement, health, and academic equity, I volunteer with the UMass iCELS and with the AARP Massachusetts "Walk with a Doc". I believe in leveraging my knowledge and skills to make a positive impact, and I am always eager to explore new opportunities to serve and contribute to the betterment of my community. 

Where is your favorite place to travel for vacation and why?  
Before moving to the United States in 2019, Barcelona held a special place in my heart as one of my preferred vacation destinations. The city offered a perfect blend of captivating perspectives of visiting a historical city with the pleasure of spending a day at the beach. However, since then, I have found myself longing for the holiday vacations spent with my family in Romania. These moments were filled with savory traditional culinary delights, local customs, and trips to breathtaking landscapes that make Romania a truly special country. 

Who is your favorite author and why?  
I love William Shakespeare’s masterpieces for their timeless themes, complex characters, and their global cultural influence.