Sarah Yuan, MD, PhD

Endowed Chair, College Of Medicine Molecular Pharmacology & Physiology

Professor & Chair, College Of Medicine Molecular Pharmacology & Physiology

Deriso Endowed Chair, Professor and Chair, Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, College of Medicine, University of South Florida

Contact Info 12901 Bruce B. Downs Blvd
Tampa, FL 33612

Academic Email:

Academic Phone: (813) 974-5104


  • PhD, Physiology and Surgery, Second Military Medical University, 1993
  • PhD, Physiology, Second Military Medical University, 1988
  • MD, Medicine, First Military Medicial University, 1983

Interdisciplinary and Emerging Signature Programs

  • Allergy, Immunology & Infectious Disease
  • Cancer Biology
  • Cardiovascular
  • Cardiovascular Sciences
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Environmental & Global Health
  • Metabolic Regulation and Disorders
  • Pulmonary Physiology

Research Interests

  • The goal of our research is to better understand the cellular and molecular regulation of cardiovascular function in health and disease. We investigate the signaling mechanisms of cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions in the microcirculation during inflammation, trauma, infection, sepsis, atherosclerosis, diabetes, and metastatic tumor development. A unique aspect of our studies is the emphasis on translating novel molecular mechanisms into systemic pathophysiology via integrative analyses of human, animal, and cell models of diseases. Techniques utilized in these studies include intravital microscopy, 3D fluorescence imaging, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, electric cell-substrate impedance sensor, cell isometric tension, and state-of-the-art molecular approaches including gene knockout and mutation. Our research has been continuously supported by the National Institutes of Health.

Recent Publications

  • Chatterjee V, Beard RS, Reynolds J, Haines R, Guo M, Rubin M, Guido J, Wu, MH, and Yuan SY MicroRNA-147b regulates vascular endothelial barrier function by targeting ADAM15 expression PLoS One. 9(10) : e110286, 2014.
  • Beard SR, Haines RJ, Wu KY, Reynolds JJ, Davis SM, Elliott JE, Cha B, Wu MH, and Yuan SY. MLCK is required for β-catenin/FoxO1-dependent downregulation of claudin-5 in interleukin-1β-mediated brain endothelial cell barrier dysfunction. J Cell Sci. 127: 1840-1853, 2014.
  • Sun C, Rigor RR, Day ML, Wu HM, and Yuan SY ADAM15 cytoplasmic domain-mediated Src signaling in lung endothelial barrier dysfunction during septic injury Am J Physiol. 304: L135-42, 2013.
  • Sun C, Beard RS Jr, McLean DL, Rigor RR, Konia T, Wu MH, Yuan SY ADAM15 deficiency attenuates pulmonary hyperpermeability and acute lung injury in lipopolysaccharide-treated mice. Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol. 304: L135, 2013.
  • Rigor RR, Shen Q, Pivetti CD, Wu MH, and Yuan SY Myosin light chain kinase signaling in endothelial barrier dysfunction. Med Res Rev. 33: 911, 2013.
  • Sun C, Wu HM, Lee ES, and Yuan SY A disintegrin and metalloproteinase 15 contributes to atherosclerosis by mediating endothelial barrier dysfunction via Src family kinase activity ATVB. 32: 2444, 2012.
  • Guo M, Yuan SY, Sun C, Frederich BJ, Shen Q, McLean DL, and Wu, MH. Role of non-muscle myosin light chain kinase in neutrophil-mediated intestinal barrier dysfunction during thermal injury. Shock. 38: 436, 2012.
  • Lee ES, Van Spyk EN, Chun KC, Pitts RL, Wu MH, and Yuan SY Monocytic adhesion molecule expression and monocyte-endothelial cell dysfunction are increased in patients with peripheral vascular disease versus patients with abdominal aortic aneurysms. J Surg Res. 177: 378, 2012.
  • Sun C, Wu MH, and Yuan SY. nmMLCK deficiency ameliorates atherosclerosis in ApoE-deficient mice via reduced endothelial barrier dysfunction and monocyte migration. Circulation. 124: 48-57, 2011.
  • Shen Q, Rigor RR, Pivetti C, Wu MH, and Yuan SY Myosin light chain kinase and microvascular barrier function. Cardiovascular Research. 87: 348-355, 2010.
  • Shen Q, Lee ES, Pitts RL, Wu MH, and Yuan SY TIMP-2 regulates MMP-2 mediated endothelial barrier dysfunction and breast cancer cell transmigration through lung microvascular endothelial cells. Mol. Cancer Res. 8: 939-951, 2010.