Biomedical Research Foundation Academy Of AthensAcademy Of Athens
Scientific Personnel

Dimitris Dimitris Beis, PhD
University Faculty, Affiliated Investigator

Telephone : +30 210 6597 197
Fax : +30 210 6597 545
e-mail :

Center :

Clinical, Experimental Surgery & Translational Research

Lab Site :

Beis Lab

Brief Bio

I am a researcher B and Head of the Laboratory of Zebrafish Disease Models at the Clinical, Experimental Surgery and Translational Research Center of the Biomedical Research Foundation, Academy of Athens. My research interests are in the areas of Cellular and Developmental Biology. During my PhD in the lab of Ben Scheres in Utrecht, I identified how auxin acts to maintain the stem cell population of Arabidopsis roots and identified the PLETHORA family of transcriptions factors that act downstream of auxin and are the master regulators of several developmental processes. I moved to UCSF in 2002, as a post-doc in the lab of Didier Stainier and started working with zebrafish focusing on cardiovascular development and more particularly on cardiac valve development. I was the first to describe this process at cellular resolution, using confocal microscopy. I also participated in a forward genetics screen, where I identified several mutants regulating cardiac valve development.

I moved back to Greece in 2006 as a Human Frontier Career Development awardee and was the first to introduce zebrafish research in Greece in 2006. I have installed and maintained the largest zebrafish facility in Greece since then. As a member of the EU funded grant TransMed (REGPOT, 2009) to support Translational Research in BRFAA, I was able to expand the zebrafish facility and triple its capacity. I am a founding member and currently elected member of the Executive Board of EuFishBiomed (the European Society for promoting zebrafish use in Biomedical Research) with more than 300 participating labs in Europe. During the last years, I collaborated with several Greek research teams and trained numerous people to use zebrafish as an experimental model system. These projects include screenings for new Bioactive Compounds in Natural Extracts, Ecotoxicological studies of emerging pollutants, as well as generating zebrafish knock outs to study the function of novel genes.

However, the main focus of my lab remains on Cardiovascular Disease and angiogenesis. We have been able to identify the significance of intracardiac flow dynamics during the development of the heart for proper cardiac valve development. We recently expanded our strategy to study the mechanisms of cardiovascular regeneration exploiting the extraordinary regenerative potential of zebrafish. We showed that zebrafish can regenerate their cardiac valves and identified the Notch signaling pathway as a key regulator for the first steps of this process.

Selected Publications

Scopus 10/ 2019:
total impact factor: >220, 3285 citations, 30 documents, h-index: 15

Scopus author ID: 6507967207

Kefalos P, Agalou A, Kawakami K and Beis D (2019) Reactivation of Notch signaling is required for cardiac valve regeneration Sci Rep 16059. 10.1038/s41598-019-52558-y

Bensimon-Brito A, Ramkumar S, Boezio GLM, Guenther S, Kuenne C, Sánchez-Iranzo H, Iloska D, Piesker J, Pullamsetti S, Mercader N, Beis D, Stainier DYR. (2019) Cardiac valve regeneration in adult zebrafish: importance of TGFß signaling in new tissue formation. Dev Cell

Sarantis P, Gaitanaki C, Beis D. (2019) Ventricular remodeling of single-chambered myh6-/- adult zebrafish hearts occurs via a hyperplastic response and is accompanied by elastin deposition in the atrium. Cell Tissue Res. May 25. doi: 10.1007/s00441-019-03044-4.

Psarras S, Beis D, Nikouli S, Tsikitis M, Capetanaki Y. (2019) Three in a Box: Understanding Cardiomyocyte, Fibroblast, and Innate Immune Cell Interactions to Orchestrate Cardiac Repair Processes. Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine  10.3389/fcvm.2019.00032 

Gomes CPDC, Ágg B, Andova A, Arslan S, Baker A, Barteková M, Beis D, Betsou F, et al. Catalyzing Transcriptomics Research in Cardiovascular Disease: The CardioRNA COST Action CA17129. Noncoding RNA. 2019 Mar 29;5(2). pii: E31. doi: 10.3390/ncrna5020031.

Giardoglou P, Beis D. (2019 ) On Zebrafish Disease Models and Matters of the Heart. Biomedicines. Feb 28;7(1). pii: E15. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines7010015.

Agalou A, Thrapsianiotis M, Angelis A, Papakyriakou A,Skaltsounis A-L, Aligiannis N and Beis D (2018) Identification of Novel Melanin Synthesis Inhibitors From Crataegus pycnoloba Using an in vivo Zebrafish Phenotypic Assay. Front. Pharmacol. 9:265. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2018.00265.

Katraki-Pavlou M and Beis D (2018). Zebrafish angiogenesis and valve morphogenesis: insights from development and disease models. Springer Special Book "Zebrafish, Medaka, and Other Small Fishes - New Model Animals in Biology, Medicine, and Beyond”. Host Editors: Hiromi Hirata and Atsuo Iida.

Bournele D and Beis D. (2016) Zebrafish models of cardiovascular disease. Heart Fail Rev. doi: 10.1007/s10741-016-9579-y.

Malissovas N, Griffin LB, Antonellis A and Beis D (2016) Dimerization is required for GARS-mediated neurotoxicity in dominant CMT disease. Hum Mol Genet 25(8):1528-42. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddw031

Kalogirou S, Malissovas N, Moro E, Argenton F, Stainier DY, Beis D. (2014) Intracardiac flow dynamics affect the morphogenesis and maturation of the atrioventricular valves. Cardiovasc Res. 104(1):49-60

Beis D, Bartman T, Jin SW, Scott I, D’Amico L, Ober E, Verkade H, Frantsve J, Field H, Wehman A, Baier H, Tallafuss A, Bally-Cuif L, Chen JN, Stainier DYR and Jungblut B. (2005) Genetic and Cellular analyses of zebrafish atrio-ventricular cushion and valve development.iDevelopment 132(18):4193-204


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