Elena N. Dedkova, DVM, PhD

Associate Professor of Pulmonology

Associate Professor
Office Phone: (916) 686-7610
Fax: (916) 686-7310



  • AHA Fellowship, Cardiovascular Physiology, Loyola University Chicago, IL
  • PhD, Physiology, Institute of Cellular Biophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences
  • DVM, Medicine, Moscow State Academy of Veterinary Medicine and Biotechnology


Dr. Dedkova teaches Physiology courses for our M1 and M2 students. She is one of the global leaders in the field of mitochondrial research and cardiovascular physiology. Prior to coming to CNU College of Medicine, Dr. Dedkova held faculty positions at the University of California School of Medicine in Davis, CA, Rush University School of Medicine and Loyola University School of Medicine in Chicago, IL.


Dr. Dedkova’s research is focused on developing new therapeutics for lethal cardiomyopathy in Friedreich's Ataxia (FA). Her lab uses most clinically relevant animal models of FA and pharmaceutical interventions in combination with the state-of-the-art in-vivo imaging techniques. Friedreich's ataxia is a monogenic recessive ataxia caused by reduction of a single mitochondrial protein, frataxin. Although the name of Friedreich's ataxia refers to the neurodegenerative ataxia, most patients with FA die in their 30s from cardiac failure, caused by deficient frataxin expression in the heart. Currently, there is no FDA approved therapy for this devastating disease. The ultimate goal of Dr. Dedkova’s work is to investigate the signaling mechanisms which lead to the progression of ataxia, neurodegeneration and cardiac failure in Friedreich's ataxia, identify potential drug treatments which can ameliorate the development of disease and extend the life of affected individuals

Moreover, Dr. Dedkova has a long-standing interest in examining effects of ketones and ketogenic diets on cardiovascular health. Dr. Dedkova has identified the role of 18-kDa outer mitochondrial membrane transporter (TSPO) protein in cardiovascular health and disease. She published her research data in high-impact journals such as Circulation Research, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Cardiovascular Research, Journal of the American Heart Association (JAHA), Frontiers in Mitochondrial Biology, and many others.

Research Interests

Drug development, Heart Failure, Cardiac Hypertrophy, Cardiac Metabolism, Cardiovascular Signaling, Mitochondrial Function, Type 2 Diabetes, Ketones, Ketogenic diets, TSPO