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Department of Medicine

Basic Science Research

Master
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Na Li, Ph.D.

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Dr. Li's lab is investigating inflammasome-mediated pathogenesis of atrial fibrillation and the role of FKBP5 in cardiac arrhythmia and cardiomyopathy. Her research uses multidisciplinary approaches to examine how risk factors such as inflammation, obesity, and hypertension modify the function of cardiac ion channels and calcium handling proteins via transcriptional or post-transcriptional mechanisms, with the goal of elucidating the mechanistic link between risk factors and the pathophysiology of cardiac arrhythmias, to develop novel therapeutic targets for arrhythmic patients.

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Xinchun Pi, Ph.D.

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Dr. Pi's lab is studying the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulation of endothelial cell functions during vascular development and in pathological conditions such as inflammation, atherosclerosis, peripheral vascular disease, and obesity. In particular, her research focuses on the signaling pathways induced by low-density lipoprotein receptor–related protein 1 (LRP1) and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP), to develop treatments for vascular-associated conditions.

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Huaizhu Wu, M.D.

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Dr. Wu's lab examines the role of inflammation in the development of atherosclerosis and diabetes in association with dyslipidemia and obesity. His research uses animal models of disease in which molecules of interest have been ablated in specific tissues/cells, as well as human subjects and tissues, to evaluate the effects of hyperlipidemia and obesity on monocyte/macrophage phenotypes and their contributions to atherosclerosis and inflammation, with the goal of determining causal links between inflammation and metabolic dysfunctions, to identify novel therapeutic targets for patients with insulin resistance, diabetes, and atherosclerosis.

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Liang Xie, Ph.D.

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Dr. Xie's lab is investigating the molecular mechanisms and consequences of myocardial ischemia. His research focuses on the molecular mechanisms by which prolyl hydroxylase domain proteins regulate calcium cycling and cardiac contractile function, and how their dysregulation contributes to the pathophysiological development of heart diseases such as cardiac hypertrophy and arrhythmia.