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Ali Abdul-Sater

Ali Abdul-Sater

Picture of Ali Abdul-Sater
Ali Abdul-Sater
Associate Professor

Eligible to Supervise

Biology Graduate Program


Abdul-Sater Lab


Ali Abdul-Sater obtained his Master of Science from the American University of Beirut and completed his Ph. D. in Immunology in 2010 at the University of California, Merced. He then trained as a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University in New York City before moving to Canada in 2013 to continue his postdoctoral training in the Department of Immunology at the University of Toronto. In 2016, Dr. Abdul-Sater joined the School of Kinesiology and Health Science in the Faculty of Health at York University as an Assistant Professor and established his research group. In 2022, he joined the Biology Graduate program at York University as an associate member.

Dr. Abdul-Sater’s research program is focused on understanding how inflammation is regulated and on exploring ways to modulate the inflammatory response to devise new therapies for autoimmune diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis. He has published several high-profile research articles in top scientific journals like Nature Immunology, Immunity, Frontiers in Immunology and OncoImmunology. Dr. Abdul-Sater has been recognized with several prestigious awards including the “Stars Career Development Award” from the Arthritis Society, a “Research Chair in the Regulatory Mechanisms of Inflammation” from York University, the “Bhagirath Singh Early Career Award in Infection and Immunity” from CIHR and the “Faculty of Health Dean’s Early Career Research Award” from York University.

Specifically, Dr. Abdul-Sater’s lab is interested in identifying novel regulators of inflammation and understanding the molecular mechanisms through which these regulators control innate immunity and the inflammatory response. They are currently pursuing several avenues of research, and they include:

1) Specific targeting of TRAF1 to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis and other inflammation-driven diseases.
2) Investigating the molecular mechanisms through which different exercise regimens regulate the immune response.
3) Assessing the role of individual Type I interferons in bacterial and viral responses.

Selected Publications

1. Abdul Hadee Lone*, Jialing Tang*, Angelica Pignalosa, Henry H. Hsu, Ali A. Abdul-Sater#, Gary Sweeney. Abdul-Sater and Sweeney are co-corresponding senior authors. A novel blood-based bioassay to monitor adiponectin signaling. International Immunopharmacology, Volume 132, 10 May 2024, 111890.

2. Hye Kyoung Sung, Jialing Tang, James Jahng, Erfei Song, Yee Kwan Chan, Abdul Lone, Jeffrey Peterson, Ali Abdul-Sater, and Gary Sweeney. Ischemia-induced cardiac dysfunction is exacerbated in adiponectin-knockout mice due to impaired autophagy flux. Clinical & Translational Science 2024 Mar;17(3):e13758. doi: 10.1111/cts.13758.

3. Sungji Cho, Keith Dadson, Hye Kyoung Sung, Oyeronke Ayansola, Ali Mirzaesmaeili*, Nina Noskovicova, Yimu Zhao, Krisco Cheung, Milica Radisic, Boris Hinz, Ali Abdul Sater, Henry H. Hsu h, Gary D. Lopaschuk, Gary Sweeney. Cardioprotection by the adiponectin receptor agonist ALY688 in a preclinical mouse model of heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF). Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy 2024 Feb;171:116119. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2023.116119. Epub 2024 Jan 4.

4. Bellissimo CA, Gandhi S, Castellani LN, Murugathasan M*, Delfinis LJ, Thuhan A, Garibotti MC, Seo Y, Rebalka IA, Hsu HH, Sweeney G, Hawke TJ, Abdul-Sater AA, Perry CGR. The slow-release adiponectin analogue ALY688-SR modifies early-stage disease development in the D2.mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2023 Dec 25. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00638.2023. Online ahead of print.

5. Safoura Zangiabadi*, Khalil P. Chamoun*, Khang Nguyen, Yitian Tang*, Gary Sweeney and Ali A. Abdul-Sater#. Copper Infused Fabric Attenuates Inflammation in Macrophages. PLoS One 2023 Sep 15;18(9):e0287741. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0287741.

6. Catherine Anne Bellissimo, Laura N Castellani, Michael S Finch, Mayoorey Murugathasan*, Shivam Gandhi, Gary Sweeney, Ali A Abdul-Sater, Rebecca Macpherson, and Christopher G. R. Perry. Memory impairment in the D2.mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy is prevented by the adiponectin receptor agonist ALY688. Experimental Physiology 2023 Sep;108(9):1108-1117. doi: 10.1113/EP091274. Epub 2023 Jul 6.

7. Mayoorey Murugathasan*, Ardavan Jafari*, Amandeep Amandeep*, Syed A. Hassan*, Matthew Chihata* and Ali A. Abdul-Sater#. Moderate exercise induces trained immunity in macrophages. American Journal of Physiology – Cell Physiology 325: C429–C442, 2023. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00130.2023
This publication received a significant press interest and was featured in at least 12 news stories from 12 outlets, including Psychology Today and the Science Times, around the globe in five different languages. It was also ranked in the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric.

8. Ali Mirzaesmaeili*, Safoura Zangiabadi*, Jonathan Raspanti*, Ali Akram*, Robert D Inman and Ali A. Abdul-Sater#. Cutting Edge: Negative Regulation of Inflammasome Activation by TRAF1 Can Limit Gout. Journal of Immunology 2023 Mar 1;210(5):531-535. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.2200465.
This publication was featured as one of the most significant advancements in arthritis research in 2023 by the Arthritis Society of Canada.

9. Sung, H.K., Murugathasan, M., Abdul-Sater, A.A., Sweeney, G. Autophagy deficiency exacerbates iron overload induced reactive oxygen species production and apoptotic cell death in skeletal muscle cells. Cell Death Dis 14, 252 (2023).

10. Eddie Tam, Hye Kyoung Sung, Nhat Hung Lam, Sally You, Sungji Cho, Saher M. Ahmed, Ali A. Abdul-Sater, Gary Sweeney. Role of mitochondrial iron overload in mediating cell death in H9c2 cells. Cells 2022 Dec 28;12(1):118. doi: 10.3390/cells12010118.

11. Anna Vainshtein, Mikhaela Slavin, Arthur Cheng, Jonathan Memme, Ashley Oliveira, Christopher Perry, Ali Abdul-Sater, Angelo Belcastro, Michael Riddell, Matthew Triolo, Tara Haas, Emilie Roudier, and David Hood. Scientific Meeting report: International Biochemistry of Exercise 2022. Journal of Applied Physiology 2022 Nov 10. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00475.2022

12. Emily C. Fraschetti, Lauren E. Skelly, Joel L. Prowting, Ali A. Abdul-Sater, and Andrea R. Josse. The acute effects of milk consumption on systemic inflammation after combined resistance and plyometric exercise in young adult females. Nutrients 2022 Oct 28;14(21):4532. doi: 10.3390/nu14214532.

13. Samuel A. Killackey, Nathaniel J. Winsor, Dana J. Philpott, Ali A. Abdul-Sater, and Stephen E. Girardin. Mitochondrial protein import stress regulates the LC3 lipidation step of mitophagy through NLRX1 and RRBP1. Molecular Cell 2022 Aug 4;82(15):2815-2831.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2022.06.004.

14. Safoura Zangiabadi* and Ali A. Abdul-Sater#. Regulation of the NLRP3 Inflammasome by Posttranslational Modifications. The Journal of Immunology, 15, 2022, 208 (2) 286-292; DOI:

15. Ali Akram*, Safoura Zangiabadi* and Ali A. Abdul Sater#. Detection of ASC Oligomerization by Western Blotting. Methods in Molecular Biology, 2022;2459:73-78. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-2144-8_7

16. Mayoorey Murugathasan* and Ali A. Abdul Sater#. Measurement of Inflammasome-Induced Mitochondrial Dysfunction by Flow Cytometry. Methods in Molecular Biology, 2022;2459:65-72. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-2144-8_6

17. Maria I Edilova, Jaclyn C Law, Safoura Zangiabadi*, Kenneth Ting, Achire Mbanwi, Andrea Arruda, David Uehling, Methvin Isaac, Michael Prakesch, Rima Al-awar, Mark D Minden, Ali A. Abdul-Sater#, and Tania H. Watts. (Abdul-Sater and Watts are joint senior authors). The PKN1- TRAF1 signaling axis as a potential new target for chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Oncoimmunolgy – Volume 10, 2021 - Issue 1

18. Maria I. Edilova¶, Ali Akram*¶ and Ali A. Abdul Sater#. Innate Immunity Drives Pathogenesis of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Biomedical Journal, 2020 Jul 8:S2319-4170(20)30098-6. doi: 10.1016/

19. David Ojcius¶, Ardavan Jafari*¶, Laxmi Yeruva, Christian Schindler and Ali Abdul-Sater#. Dicer controls the activation of NLRP3 inflammasomes.¶ Co-first authors PLoS One 2019 Apr 23;14(4):e0215689. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0215689.

20. Dhillon B*, Aleithan F*, Abdul-Sater Z, Abdul-Sater AA#. The Evolving Role of TRAFs in Mediating Inflammatory Responses. Frontiers in Immunology, 2019 Feb

21. Edilova MI, Abdul-Sater AA, Watts TH. TRAF1 Signaling in Human Health and Disease. Frontiers in Immunology, 2018 Dec 18;9:2969. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.02969.

22. Chang YH, Wang KC, Chu KL, Clouthier DL, Tran AT, Torres Perez MS, Zhou AC, Abdul-Sater AA, Watts TH. Dichotomous Expression of TNF Superfamily Ligands on Antigen-Presenting Cells Controls Post-priming Anti-viral CD4+ T Cell Immunity. Immunity, 2017 Nov 21;47(5):943-958

23. Abdul-Sater AA, Edilova MI, Clouthier DL, Mbanwi A, Kremmer E, Watts TH. The signaling adaptor TRAF1 negatively regulates Toll-like receptor signaling and this underlies its role in rheumatic disease. Nature Immunology, 2017 Jan;18(1):26-35. doi: 10.1038/ni.3618. Highlighted by Nature Reviews Rheumatology: Reduced TRAF1 exacerbates inflammation. doi:10.1038/nrrheum.2016.203



Research Areas

Cell and Molecular Biology