Cancer Biology  Back to Main

Faculty Detail    
Jay M McDonald, MD, Endowed Professor in Laboratory Medicine
Professor and Vice Chair for Faculty Development and Education
Department of Pathology
Campus Address SHEL 614 Zip 2182
Other websites -- VA Research Career Scientist
-- UAB News
-- Newsweek
-- ScienceDaily
-- NIH Research Matters
-- Youtube highlights
-- USA Today
-- AHA/ATVB Vascular Biology Award
-- Dean's Excellence Award for Mentorship
-- UAB Faculty Senate Outstanding Member Award
-- VA Senior Research Career Scientist Award

Faculty Appointment(s)
Appointment Type Department Division Rank
Center  Comp Arthritis, MSK, Bone & Autoimmunity Ctr  Comp Arthritis, MSK, Bone & Autoimmunity Ctr Professor
Center  Comprehensive Diabetes Center  Comprehensive Diabetes Center Professor
Center  Comprehensive Cancer Center  Comprehensive Cancer Center Professor
Center  Integrative Center for Aging Research  Integrative Center for Aging Research Professor
Center  General Clinical Research Center  Nephrology Research & Training Center Professor
Center  Medicine  Ctr Cardiovasc Bio (Org Ret) Professor
Center  GL Ctr for Craniofacial, Oral, & Dental Disorders  GL Ctr for Craniofacial, Oral, & Dental Disorders Professor
Center  Nutrition Sciences   Nutrition Obesity Res Ctr (NORC) Professor
Primary  Pathology   Molecular & Cellular Pathology Professor

Graduate Biomedical Sciences Affiliations
Cancer Biology 
Cell, Molecular, & Developmental Biology 
Molecular and Cellular Pathology Program 
Pathobiology and Molecular Medicine 

Biographical Sketch 
Dr. Chen received her BS degree from Fudan University and her Ph.D. from Xiamen University. She completed postdoctoral training and was appointed as a research instructor at the University of Vermont, School of Medicine. Dr. Chen joined the faculty of Department of Pathology at UAB in June 2004. She is currently Jay M McDonald, MD, Endowed Professor in Laboratory Medicine, Professor in Molecular and Cellular Pathology and Vice Chair for Faculty Development and Education; as well as a Senior Research Career Scientist at the Birmingham VA Medical Research Division. She served the director of the UAB Pathobiology, Pharmacology and Physiology Graduate Program from 2015-2020. Dr. Chen serves as an editorial board member for Circulation Research, Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology (ATVB) and the Journal of Biological Chemistry. She is a Fellow of the American Heart Association (AHA) and Chair of the ATVB Committee on Scientific Sessions Program of the AHA. Dr. Chen has served on several grant review panels of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including the NIH Atherosclerosis and Inflammation of the Cardiovascular System (AICS) and Vascular Cell and Molecular Biology (VCMB) study sections, VA Cardiology B grant review panel and Research Scientist Award Committee, and AHA Vascular Wall Biology grant review committee. Dr. Chen received many awards, including UAB Graduate School Deans Award for Excellence in Mentorship (2016), VA Research Scientist Award (2016), UAB School of Medicine Dean's Excellence Award for Mentorship (2019), Outstanding Faculty Senate Committee Member Award (2019), "Vascular Biology Special Recognition Award" from the AHA ATVB Council (2018) and "Senior Research Career Scientist Award" from the VA (2021).

Society Memberships
Organization Name Position Held Org Link
American Society for Bone and Mineral Research  Member   
American Association for Cancer Research  Member   
American Heart Association  Fellow   

Research/Clinical Interest
Gene Regulation and Function in the Pathogenesis of Cardiovascular Disease and Aging
Regulation of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) phenotype and differentiation contributes significantly to the development of cardiovascular diseases and aging. We study the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying VSMC regulation using comprehensive molecular, biochemical and physiology approaches and translational animal models for human disease.

Selected Publications 
Publication PUBMEDID
Su H, Jiang M, Senevirathne C, Aluri S, Zhang T, Guo H, Xavier-Ferrucio J, Jin S, Tran NT, Liu SM, Sun CW, Zhu Y, Zhao Q, Chen Y, Cable L, Shen Y, Liu J, Qu CK, Han X, Klug CA, Bhatia R, Chen Y, Nimer SD, Zheng YG, Iancu-Rubin C, Jin J, Deng H, Krause DS, Xiang J, Verma A, Luo M, Zhao X.
Methylation of dual-specificity phosphatase 4 controls cell differentiation.
Cell Rep. 2021 Jul 27;36(4):109421. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2021.109421.
Chen Y, Zhao X, Wu H.
Transcriptional Programming in Arteriosclerotic Disease: A Multifaceted Function of the Runt-related Transcription Factor 2 (Runx2)
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2021, 41(1):20-34.  
Chen Y, Zhao X, Wu H.
Arterial Stiffness: A Focus on Vascular Calcification and Its Link to Bone Mineralization.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2020, 40(5):1078-1093. doi: 10.1161/ ATVBAHA.120.313131.  
Li Z, Zhao Z, Cai Z, Sun Y, Li L, Yao F, Yang L, Zhou Y, Zhu H, Fu Y, Wang L, Fang W*, Chen Y*, Kong W*.
Runx2 (Runt-Related Transcription Factor 2)-Mediated Microcalcification Is a Novel Pathological Characteristic and Potential Mediator of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2020, 40(5):1352-1369. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.119.314113.  
Yang SZ, Xu F, Yuan K, Sun Y, Zhou T, Zhao X, McDonald JM, Chen Y.
Regulation of pancreatic cancer TRAIL resistance by protein O-GlcNAcylation.
Lab Invest. 2020, 100(5):777-785. doi: 10.1038/s41374-019-0365-z.  
Chen Y, Zhao X, Wu H.
Metabolic Stress and Cardiovascular Disease in Diabetes Mellitus: The Role of Protein O-GlcNAc Modification.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2019 Aug 29:ATVBAHA119312192.  
Xu F, Sun Y, Yang SZ, Zhou T, Jhala N, McDonald JM and Chen Y.
Cytoplasmic PARP-1 Promotes TRAIL Resistance in Pancreatic Cancer.
Int J Cancer. 2019, July, 15;145(2):474-483. doi: 10.1002/ijc.32108.  
Yang Y, Sun Y, Chen J, Bradley WE, Dell'Italia LJ, Wu H, Chen Y.
AKT-independent activation of p38 MAP kinase promotes vascular calcification.
Redox Biol. 2018;16:97-103. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2018.02.009.  
Sun Y, Byon CH, Yang Y, Bradley WE, Dell'Italia LJ, Sanders PW, Agarwal A, Wu H, Chen Y
Dietary potassium regulates vascular calcification and arterial stiffness.
JCI Insight. 2017 Oct 5;2(19)
-- An Editor's pick
-- Highlighted in JCI This Month
-- A top-read paper with views over 11,500 within first week 
Deng L, Huang L, Sun Y, Heath JM, Wu H, Chen Y.
Inhibition of FOXO1/3 promotes vascular calcification.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2015 35(1):175-83 
Heath J, Sun Y, Yuan K, Bradley WE, Litovsky S, Dell'italia LJ, Chatham JC, Wu H, Chen Y.
Activation of AKT by O-GlcNAcylation Induces Vascular Calcification in Diabetes.
Circ Res. 2014 Mar 28;114(7):1094-102
-- An Editor's pick
-- Published with an accompanying editorial
-- A most often read paper in Circ Res journal in Aug 2014 
Yuan K, Sun Y, Zhou T, McDonald JM, Chen Y.
PARP-1 Regulates Resistance of Pancreatic Cancer to TRAIL Therapy
Clin Cancer Res. 2013, 19(17):4750-9. 
Sun Y, Byon CH, Yuan K, Chen J, Mao X, Heath JM, Javed A, Zhang K, Anderson PG, Chen Y.
Smooth muscle cell-specific runx2 deficiency inhibits vascular calcification.
Circ Res. 2012 Aug 17;111(5):543-52. Epub 2012 Jul 6.
-- A top downloaded article in Circ Res journal in July 2012
-- Highlighted in the Circ Res Thematic Synosis on Atherosclerosis. 
Mao X, Debenedittis P, Sun Y, Chen J, Yuan K, Jiao K, Chen Y.
Vascular smooth muscle cell smad4 gene is important for mouse vascular development.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2012 Sep;32(9):2171-7. Epub 2012 Jul 5. 
Chen J, Yuan K, Mao X, Miano JM, Wu H, Chen Y.
Serum response factor regulates bone formation via IGF-1 and Runx2 signals.
J Bone Miner Res. 2012 Aug;27(8):1659-68. Epub 2012 Mar 20  
Byon CH, Sun Y, Chen J, Yuan K, Mao X, Heath JM, Anderson PG, Tintut Y, Demer LL, Wang D, Chen Y.
Runx2-Upregulated Receptor Activator of Nuclear Factor {kappa}B Ligand in Calcifying Smooth Muscle Cells Promotes Migration and Osteoclastic Differentiation of Macrophages.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2011 Jun;31(6):1387-96. Epub 2011 Mar 31
-- Published with an accompanying editoral. 
Chen J, Sun Y, Mao X, Liu Q, Wu H, Chen Y.
RANKL up-regulates brain-type creatine kinase via poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 during osteoclastogenesis.
J Biol Chem. 2010 Nov 19;285(47):36315-21. Epub 2010 Sep 13.  
Pawar P, Ma L, Byon CH, Liu H, Ahn EY, Jhala N, Arnoletti JP, McDonald JM, Chen Y.
Molecular Mechanisms of Tamoxifen Therapy for Cholangiocarcinoma: Role of Calmodulin.
Clin Cancer Res. 2009;15(4):1288-1296. 
Chen Y, Wang X, Di L, Fu G, Chen Y, Bai L, Liu J, Feng X, McDonald JM, Michalek S, He Y, Yu M, Fu YX, Wen R, Wu H, Wang D
Phospholipase Cgamma 2 mediates RANKL-stimulated lymph-node organogenesis and osteoclastogenesis.
J Biol Chem. 2008; 283(43):29593-601. 
Byon CH, Javed A, Dai Q, Kappes JC, Clemens TL, Darley-Usmar VM, McDonald JM, Chen Y.
Oxidative stress induces vascular calcification through modulation of the osteogenic transcription factor Runx-2 by Akt signaling.
J Biol Chem. 2008;283(22):15319-27
-- A featured Article in vascualr biology, selected by NAVBO in 2008 
Chen Y*, Budd RC, Kelm RJ Jr, Sobel BE, Schneider DJ.
Augmentation of proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells by plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2006, 26(8):1777-83 
Chen Y, Billadello JJ, Schneider DJ.
Identification and localization of a fatty acid response region in the human plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 gene.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2000, 20(12):2696-701. 

vascular smooth muscle cells, excellular matrix, vascular calcification, atherosclerosis, diabetes, aging