Dr. Darren Woodside – Texas Heart Institute Vice President for Research – Receives Heralded Fellow Designation by the National Academy of Inventors

HOUSTON, TX (DECEMBER 7, 2021) – The Texas Heart Institute is pleased to announce that Dr. Darren G. Woodside, Senior Investigator and Vice President for Research, has been elected to the rank of Fellow within the prestigious National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Dr. Woodside has been chosen for the accolade based upon having demonstrated a highly prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on the quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society.

Election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors. The NAI Fellow program has 1,403 Fellows worldwide representing more than 250 prestigious universities, as well as governmental and non-profit research institutes. Collectively, NAI Fellows hold more than 42,700 issued U.S. patents, which have generated over 13,000 licensed technologies, established 3,200 companies, and created more than 1 million jobs. In addition, over $3 trillion in revenue has been generated based on NAI Fellow discoveries.

“Dr. Woodside is a visionary scientist and inventor who is a highly respected member of the Texas Heart Institute and the broader Texas Medical Center community. His many discoveries, along with his focus on translational science represent the mission and vision of the NAI and highlight the value of patents and commercialization to universities and non-profit research institutions, both nationally and internationally,” noted Dr. Joseph G. Rogers, President & CEO of the Texas Heart Institute. He added, “Dr. Woodside fully exemplifies the mission of the Texas Heart Institute to relentlessly pursue The Next First in cardiovascular discovery. He is a tremendous asset to our scientific program and will undoubtedly make important contributions to the NIA.”

At the Texas Heart Institute, Dr. Woodside’s myriad roles include leading 12 departments, of which there are 8 research programs and labs that have been awarded over $12 million in federal and sponsored research funding in the last three years. These research labs are led by several prior inductees of the National Academy of Inventors, including Mehdi Razavi, MD; James Martin, MD, Ph.D., Ronald J. Biediger, Ph.D.; and Peter Vanderslice, Ph.D. Additionally, Dr. Woodside boasts four U.S. patents – alongside three pending patent applications – which are licensed or optioned to two companies (including 32 patent applications in foreign jurisdictions).

“Dr. Darren Woodside truly merits the Fellow classification in every sense of the word based upon his dedication to tangible cardiovascular research and invention, as well as his unwavering commitment to dedicating his career to uncovering new methods of helping to improve the discipline of heart care,” emphasized Paul R. Sanberg, Ph.D., D.Sc., FNAI, President of the National Academy of Inventors. He added, “The NAI is honored to have him take on the role of Fellow, an achievement that further cements the indelible mark he has made throughout his distinguished career.”

Dr. Woodside’s research at the Texas Heart Institute centers on the role that cell adhesion plays in cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases, as well as the development of novel means to identify and treat these diseases. Prior to assuming the position of Vice President for Research, he served as Associate Director of the Molecular Cardiology Research Laboratories at THI and as Associate Director of Drug Discovery at Encysive Pharmaceuticals. He was awarded his Ph.D. from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Department of Immunology and was a post-doctoral fellow at The Scripps Research Institute. He has authored numerous publications, served on Editorial Review Boards, and currently chairs the NIH Innovative Immunology Study Section.

Dr. Woodside will be inducted at the Fellows Induction Ceremony at the NAI Annual Meeting taking place from June 13 – 15, 2022 in Phoenix, Arizona.  The sitting Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will provide the keynote address for the ceremony.


A full list of NAI Fellows is available on the NAI website.



Texas Heart Institute (THI), founded by world-renowned cardiovascular surgeon Dr. Denton A. Cooley in 1962, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to delivering the future of cardiovascular health through exceptional patient care, discovery, and a commitment to learning. Participating in research programs in cardiology, cardiovascular surgery, stem cell and gene therapy, and regenerative medicine, THI’s scientists and physicians are spearheading some of the most innovative research in the medical field. Through its translational basic and clinical research programs, Texas Heart Institute is learning more every day about the underlying causes of heart disease and the ways to better treat and even prevent it. With initiatives ranging from postdoctoral and continued medical education to public outreach and scientific publications, THI is dedicated to spreading awareness and sharing updates on ways to prevent, treat and defeat cardiovascular disease. With over 12 million visitors coming to its website from around the world every year, www.texasheart.org is just one of the ways THI is helping to educate people on the importance of heart health. For more information, please visit https://www.texasheart.org. @Texas_Heart



The National Academy of Inventors is a member organization comprising U.S. and international universities, and governmental and non-profit research institutes, with over 4,000 individual inventor members and Fellows spanning more than 250 institutions worldwide. It was founded in 2010 to recognize and encourage inventors with patents issued from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), enhance the visibility of academic technology and innovation, encourage the disclosure of intellectual property, educate, and mentor innovative students, and translate the inventions of its members to benefit society. The NAI has a close partnership with the USPTO and is one of three honorific organizations, along with the National Medals and National Inventors Hall of Fame, working closely with the USPTO on many discovery and innovation support initiatives. The NAI publishes the multidisciplinary journal, Technology and Innovation. www.academyofinventors.org   @AcadofInventors