Alexander Gosslau

Picture of Alexander    Gosslau



Office: N-698H

Office Hours:

Phone: +1 (212) 220-1317

Dr. Gosslau has nearly 20 years of experience in Cell and Molecular Biology in academia and industry in the US and Europe. He serves as Professor at the Dept. of Science (Biology), City University of New York, BMCC where he started in 2012. Since 2009 also serving as a Visiting Professor in the Dept. of Chemical Biology at Rutgers University. Prior appointments as Research Assistant Professor (2006 – 2009) at Rutgers University where he started as Postdoctoral Research Associate in 2001.

Previous appointments as Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Bremen in Germany and University of Stavanger in Norway. Received Ph.D. from the University of Bremen, Germany, and Master’s degree from the Universities of Oldenburg and Goettingen, Germany.

As Head of Cell and Molecular Biology at WellGen, Inc. leadership roles in research & development and project management in the field of molecular medicine, medicinal food, inflammation, and cancer research for 12 years. In 2013, appointed as Associate Editor-in-Chief of Food Science and Human Wellness (Elsevier). In 2017 as Editorial Board of Movement and Nutrition in Health and Disease. Reviewer for various international journals. Publications of research manuscripts and reviews in top tier, peer-reviewed journals, patents and numerous presentations in international academic and corporate meetings. Collaborations with various academic institutions and several professional memberships. Raised over $3 MM from government and corporate fundings to support his research.


Cellular biology, molecular biology, microbiology


  • B.S. , Universities of Goettingen and Oldenburg, Germany ,1986
  • M.S. , University of Oldenburg, Germany ,1993
  • Ph.D. , University of Bremen, Germany ,1998

Courses Taught

BIO 210 (Biology I)
BIO 220 (Biology II)

Research and Projects

  • The main goal of Dr. Gosslau’s research is to search for molecular mechanisms and targets of bioactives derived from natural plant extracts with a particular focus on pro-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory effects with strong therapeutic potential against cardiovascular-, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis, cancer and other inflammation-based diseases. Dr. Gosslau developed different disease-targeted cell-based models in combination with bioassays, gene and protein expression analysis, cellular imaging techniques, and various screening technologies for mechanistic and genomic analysis of test compounds.Dr. Gosslau’s cancer research is focused on the correlation between the induction of apoptosis and the molecular difference between normal and cancer cells with emphasis on mitochondria. Preliminary data analyzing anti-cancer effects of resveratrol analogs and black tea derived compounds support the hypothesis that differences in mitochondrial morphology may determine the capacity of bioactives to activate the intrinsic apoptotic signaling pathway as molecular cancer target in certain cancer cells.Enrichment of phyto extracts with specific anti-inflammatory bioactives is a promising strategy to find naturally derived extracts effective against diseases associated with chronic inflammation such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, osteoarthritis among many others. Dr. Gosslau established the nutrigenomic screening technology, employing surrogate gene expression analysis, laying the groundwork for finding natural anti-inflammatory therapeutics effective against degenerative diseases. Proprietary black tea and orange peel extracts enriched with bioactives showing strong anti-inflammatory effects in different cell-based assays, animal models and humans are promising candidates for medicinal food and food supplements which had been marketed by industry.


  • Gosslau, A. and Rensing, L. (2000) Induction of Hsp68 by oxidative stress involves the lipoxygenase pathway in C6 rat glioma cells. Brain Res. 864, 114-123
  • Gosslau, A., Ruoff, P., Mohsenzadeh, S., Hobohm, U., and Rensing, L. (2001) Heat shock and oxidative stress-induced exposure of hydrophobic protein domains as common signal in the induction of hsp68. J. Biol. Chem. 276, 1814-1821
  • Gosslau, A., Dittrich, W., Willig, A. and Jaros, P.P. (2001) Cytological effects of platelet-derived growth factor on mitochondrial ultrastructure in fibroblasts. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. A Mol. Integr. Physiol. 128, 241-249
  • Gosslau, A., and Rensing, L. (2002) Oxidative stress, age-related cell damage and antioxidative mechanisms. Z. Gerontol. Geriatr., 35, 139-150. (Review)
  • Rensing, L., and Gosslau, A. (2004) Role of free radicals in the limitations of life time (Warum altern wir? Zur Rolle freier Radikale bei der Begrenzung der Lebenszeit) Blickpunkt a?? der Mann 3, 7-12. (Article in german).
  • Gosslau, A., and Chen, K.Y. (2004) Nutraceuticals, apoptosis, and disease prevention. Nutrition 20, 95-102 (Review)
  • Gosslau, A., Chen, M., Ho, C.-T., and Chen, K.Y. (2005) A methoxy derivative of resveratrol analog selectively induced activation of the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway in transformed fibroblasts. Brit. J. Cancer, 92, 513-521
  • Fang, F., Sang, S., Chen, K.Y., Gosslau, A., Ho, C.-T., and Rosen, R.T. (2005) Isolation and identification of cytotoxic compounds from bay leaf (Laurus nobilis). Food Chem., 93, 497-501
  • Mohamed, S.A., Hanke, T., Bechtel, M.J.F., Scharfschwerdt, M., Meissner, C., Sievers, H.H., and Gosslau, A. (2006) Mitochondrial DNA deletions and the aging heart. Exp. Gerontol., 41, 508-517
  • Gosslau, A., Pabbaraja, S., Knapp, S., and Chen, K.Y. (2008) Trans- and cis-stilbene polyphenol derivatives induced rapid perinuclear mitochondrial clustering and p53-independent apoptosis in cancer cells but not normal cells. Eur. J. Pharmacol., 587, 25-34
  • Lu, J., Gosslau, A., Li, M.H., Liu, A. Y-C. and Chen, K.Y. (2008) PCR differential display-based identification of regulator of G protein signaling in human colon cancer cells induced by black tea polyphenol theaflavin. Eur. J. Pharmacol., 601, 66-72
  • Gosslau, A., Sisk, S., Huang, M.-T., Ho, C.-T., and Chen, K.Y. (2008) Case study of an anti-inflammatory ingredient discovered via nutrigenomic screening. J. Nutrigenet. and Nutrigenomics, 1, 76-77
  • Gosslau, A., Jao, D. and Chen, K.Y. (2009) Thermal killing of human colon cancer cells is associated with the loss of eukaryotic initiation factor 5A. J. Cell. Physiol., 219, 485-493
  • Gosslau, A., Jao, D., Huang, M.-T., Ho, C.-T., Evans, D., Rawson, N. E., and Chen, K.Y. (2011) Effects of the black tea polyphenol theaflavin-2 on apoptotic and inflammatory pathways in vitro and in vivo. Mol. Nutr. Food Res., 55, 198-208
  • Gosslau, A., Li, S., Ho, C.-T., Chen, K.Y., and Rawson, N.E. (2011) The importance of natural product characterization in studies of their anti-inflammatory activity. Mol. Nutr. Food Res., 55, 74-82
  • Gosslau, A., Chen, K.Y., Ho, C.-T., and Li, S. (2014) Anti-inflammatory effects of characterized orange peel extracts enriched with bioactive polymethoxyflavones. Food Sci. Human Wellness, 3, 26-35
  • Gosslau, A. (2016) Assessment of food toxicology. Food Sci. Human Wellness, 5, 103-115
  • Gosslau, A. (2016) Measurement of toxicants and toxicity. Chapter 2 in “Food Toxicology”, editors: Bagchi, D. and Swaroop, A., Taylor & Francis, Boca Raton, Florida, ISBN 9781498708746.,
  • Gosslau, A., Zachariah, E., Li, S. and Ho, C.-T (2018) Anti-diabetic effects of a theaflavin-enriched black tea extract in the obese ZDF rat model. J. Food Bioact., 3, 151-160
  • Gosslau, A., Zachariah, E., Li, S. and Ho, C.-T (2018) Effects of a flavonoid-enriched orange peel extract against type 2 diabetes in the obese ZDF rat model. Food Sci. Human Wellness, 7, 244-251
  • Gosslau, A., Li, S., Zachariah, E., and Ho, C.-T (2018) Therapeutic connection between black tea theaflavins and their benzotropolone core structure. Curr. Pharmacol. Rep., 4, 447-452
  • Li, S., Gosslau, A., Lange K. and Ho, C.-T.* (2019) Profiled tea extracts exemplifying the             importance of characterizing food bioactives: opinion piece. J. Food Bioactives, 5, 1-5
  • Gosslau, A., Ho, C.-T. and Li, S. and (2019) The role of rutin and diosmin, two citrus polyhydroxyflavones in disease prevention and treatment. J. Food Bioactives, 5, 43-56

Honors, Awards and Affiliations

  • 1994-1998, Analysis of the stress response in mammalian cells, Stipend award from University of Bremen, Germany
  • 2001-2002, Mechanistic analysis of the effects of black tea against cancer, Research fellowship award from Rutgers University
  • 2013 – present_Presidential Scholar at BMCC
  • 2013-2014, Controlling Type 2 Diabetes with Proprietary Natural Extracts in Medical Food, NIH_[R43/R44 AT007889, National Institutes of Health), Role: PI
  • 2014-2015, Screening for natural anti-inflammatory plant extracts using an inflammation targeted human cell-based model, PSC-CUNY (67483-00 45), Role: PI
  • 2015-2016, Differences in mitochondria between normal and cancer cells as molecular cancer target, PSC-CUNY (68485-00 46), Role: PI
  • 2019-2021 (estimated), Advancing Undergraduate Research Among Minorities in Plant Biology Enrolled in an Urban Community College, NSF_REU (1756998, National Science Foundation), Role: C0-PI

Additional Information