Mladen Boban

Mladen Boban

Croatia - Split


Prof. Boban was awarded his medical doctor degree at the University of Zagreb, School of Medicine in 1989 and did his postdoctoral fellowship at the Medical College of Wisconsin, USA from 1989-1992. Since 1992, he has been working at the University of Split Medical School. He served  as dean and vice-dean, and currently is  head of the Department of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology.

He teaches pharmacology courses for students in the field of  biomedicine and carries out experimental research in the field of cardiovascular pharmacology and biological effects of wine.  He was president of the Croatian Pharmacological Society in two mandate term. He is the Croatian delegate to the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) and was President of Commission “Safety and Health”.


- University of Split School of Medicine
- Department of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology
- Wine Information Council scientific advisory network
- International Scientific Forum on Alcohol Research
- Member of 'Lifestyle, Diet, Wine & Health' Scientific Committee
- Chair of 'Lifestyle, Diet, Wine & Health' session 'Importance of context: Lifestyle, Wellness and Health'

Areas of expertise

- Experimental pharmacology
- Biological effects of wine


Pharmacological basis of J-shaped curve for biological effects of wine

Both in molecular pharmacology and in human nutrition, different compounds were shown to have opposite effects as a function of dosage [1,2]. The phenomenon of small quantities having effects opposite from that of large quantities is termed hormesis. Growing interdisciplinary evidence indicates that the hormetic dose-response relationship is a fundamental biological concept with broad biomedical implications. This type of dose-response relationship may be described as an inverted U-shaped or a J-shaped dose response (Figure 1). Whether the dose response is an inverted U- or J-shape is determined by the endpoint measured. For example, in the case of growth or viability, the results would be plotted as an inverted U-shaped dose response. In the case of disease incidence or mortality risk the results are typically plotted as J-shaped dose responses. In the context of human nutrition, the hormetic biphasic effects of alcohol consumption on human health have been particularly well studied. The vast majority of epidemiological studies consistently demonstrate the J-shaped dose-response association of alcohol consumption with different diseases and total mortality. In the case of wine, there are two principal constituents that are considered responsible for most wines’ biological effects: alcohol and phenolic compounds. Using examples from the in vivo and in vitro experimental study, it will be shown that for both alcohol and wine phenolics, the J-shaped dose-response relationship is preserved despite differences in experimental models and endpoints measured.


  1. Calabrese E. (2009). Hormesis and pharmacology. In Pharmacology 75-102, Academic Press. DOI 10.1016/B978-0-12-369521-5.00005-1

  2. Hayes DP. (2007) Nutritional hormesis. Eur J Clin Nutr  61:147–159, DOI10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602507