Christian Faul, PhD

Dr. Christian Faul received his undergraduate training in cell and molecular biology at the Ruprecht Karls University Heidelberg in Germany from 1993-1999. He earned his PhD title at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx in 2005, and he conducted his postdoctoral research training at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. In 2008, Dr. Faul became a faculty member in the Department of Medicine and in the Department of Cell Biology & Anatomy at the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine. In 2017, he joined the University of Alabama at Birmingham where he currently holds the rank of Associate Professor in the Division of Nephrology within the Department of Medicine and in the Department of Cell, Developmental and Integrative Biology (CDIB). He is also the director of the Section of Mineral Metabolism and a member of the Nephrology Research & Training Center (NRTC) as well as the Comprehensive Diabetes Center and the Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Dr. Faul is a cell biologist who has a strong interest in translational medicine, especially in pathomechanisms underlying diseases of the kidney and the heart. He has formed a versatile team of collaborators, ranging from basic to clinical scientists, nephrologists to cardiologist, physiologists to geneticists. Dr. Faul’s laboratory studies signal transduction pathways in cardiac myocytes that regulate cardiac remodeling with the goal to identify novel drug targets for cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure. He focuses on circulating fibroblast growth factors and their pathological effects on the heart in the context of chronic kidney disease and diabetes. In collaborations with pharma industry, Dr. Faul analyzes beneficial cardiac effects of pharmacological blockers for fibroblast growth factor receptors in animal models with kidney injury and diabetes.

To date, Dr. Faul has published more than 60 original peer-reviewed articles, which received over 11,000 citations resulting in an h-index of 41. He is on the editorial board of Kidney International and Scientific Reports. Dr. Faul has received research funding from the American Heart Association (AHA), the American Diabetes Association (ADA), the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), and the NephCure Foundation, as well as support from institutional start-up funds and pilot grants and from pharmaceutical industry. In summer of 2015, he received his first R01 grant from the NIH/NHLBI. In summer of 2019 Dr. Faul received his second R01 from the NIH/NHLBI, as an MPI grant with his collaborator, Dr. Kenneth White, from Indiana University. Recently, Dr. Faul was awarded a third NIH/R01 grant, which is his first one from the NIDDK. Dr. Faul also received several awards for his research, including the Gail Patrick Innovation Award from the ADA in 2016, the Stanley J. Glaser Foundation Research Award from University of Miami Miller School of Medicine in 2014, the Bernd Tersteegen Award from the Association for German Kidney Centers (Verband Deutsche Nierenzentren) in 2012, and the Carl W. Gottschalk Research Award from the ASN in 2012.

Dr. Faul is extremely dedicated to the training of graduate students and postdoctoral research fellows. To date, he has trained nine PhD students and four PostDocs, as well as several undergraduate students and visiting scientists. Five of his graduate students have received F30/31 fellowships from the NIH, one graduate student has been awarded a NSF fellowship, and his PostDocs have received fellowships from the AHA and the DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Germany), as well as support from industry. Dr. Faul is the Associate Director on an NIH/R25 training grant for undergraduate kidney research and a faculty mentor on four different NIH/T32 grants supporting pre- and postdoctoral research at UAB. He has served as a member of qualifying and dissertation committees of over 15 graduate students.