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Tassos P. Anastassiades
 Tassos P. Anastassiades
Emeritus Professor
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Faculty Bio

Tassos Anastassiades, MD, PhD, FRCP(C), FCAHS is a Clinician Scientist and an Emeritus Professor of Medicine, cross-appointed to DBMS. His clinical training was at McGill at the Royal Victoria Hospital and he did most of his PhD work at the Rockefeller University in New York. He served as Head of the Division of Rheumatology essentially since its inception and provided local and National leadership in Arthritis clinical care and research for many years.

Research Interests

His Laboratory research is in connective tissue metabolism. The emphasis is on repair of damaged cartilage and bone. He has developed chemically modified glucosamines by changing the N-acetyl group to other moieties. He showed that one of these modifications, the butyrylated derivative, demonstrated pronounced protective effects on the bones of animal models of destructive arthritis and of osteoporosis. These modified glucosamine compounds can be positioned somewhere between pharmaceuticals and nutriceuticals and appear to have very low toxicity.

More recently his attention has turned to chemically modifying hyaluronic acid, the giant, ubiquitous molecule of connective tissues. Surprisingly, these modified hyaluronic acid compounds, which are of relatively low molecular weight, show a striking ability to reduce the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Both the modified glucosamines and the hyaluronic acid compounds have potentially multifaceted translational applications and are supported by several patents. Commercialization is through Queen’s University (formerly PARTEQ).

Dr. Anastassiades is also involved in observational research in osteoporosis and served the Director for the Kingston Centre of the Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMOS).

Selected Publications

Chemically modified N-acylated hyaluronan fragments modulate proinflammatory cytokine production by stimulated human macrophages.

Babasola O, Rees-Milton KJ, Bebe S, Wang J, Anastassiades TP.

J Biol Chem. 2014 Sep 5;289(36):24779-91. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M113.515783.


Human acetyl-CoA:glucosamine-6-phosphate N-acetyltransferase 1 has a relaxed donor specificity and transfers acyl groups up to four carbons in length.

Brockhausen I, Nair DG, Chen M, Yang X, Allingham JS, Szarek WA, Anastassiades T.

Biochem Cell Biol. 2016 Apr;94(2):197-204. doi: 10.1139/bcb-2015-0115.


The modified amino sugar N-Butyryl Glucosamine fed to ovariectomized rats preserves bone mineral through increased early mineralization, but does not affect body composition

Tassos Anastassiades, Karen Rees-Milton, Wilma M. Hopman. FFHDl. Vol 7, No 10 (2017)


A novel quantitative approach to the measurement of abdominal aortic calcification as applied to the Canadian Multicenter Osteoporosis Study (CaMOS).

Grant M, Turner ME, Murray-Guenther J, Anastassiades T, Hopman WM, Adams SM, Jeronimo P, Nolan R, Adams MA, Holden RM.

Bone. 2017 Apr;97:201-208. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2017.01.018


Hyaluronic acid derivatives

Patent number: 9644040, Date of Patent: May 9, 2017, Inventor: Tassos Anastassiades

Abstract: The present disclosure relates to hyaluronic acid derivatives, and in particular, derivatives in which the N-acetyl group of hyaluronic acid has been substituted, and methods and uses thereof.


Method for increasing the bone mineral density and bone micro-architecture or connectivity of a mammal using N-acylated glucosamines

Patent number: 7429573, Date of Patent: Sept 30, 2008, Inventor: Tassos Anastassiades

Abstract: A method of treating a mammal for a purpose selected from the group consisting of (a) increasing bone mineral density (BMD), (b) treating low BMD, (c) preventing and treatment of low impact fractures, (d) treatment of high impact fractures; (e) treating osteoporosis; (f) modulating a growth factor that influences bone metabolism; and (g) improving bone micro-architecture or connectivity of bone; the method comprising administering to the mammal an effective amount of a N-acylated-2-glucosamine derivative of the general formula (I): wherein R is an alkyl radical of the general formula CnH2n+1 and n is selected from 2-12.