Sarah Yuan wins prestigious national award for microvascular research

Sarah Yuan, MD, PhD, professor and chair of the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine’s Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, has received the 2020 Eugene M. Landis Award for her outstanding contributions to the field of microvascular research.

The top award is bestowed by The Microcirculatory Society to a member and active investigator who conducts and publishes meritorious research advancing the understanding of microcirculation.  Microcirculation comprises all small blood vessels in tissue and organs and their contents (blood plasma and blood cells).

Sarah Yuan, MD, PhD

Dr. Yuan also has an appointment as a professor in the Department of Surgery and holds the Deriso Endowed Chair in Cardiovascular Disease at USF Health.  A nationally recognized leader in investigating the interactions of blood cells and endothelial cells that line the inner surface of blood vessels, she has developed cutting-edge theories on the molecular mechanisms controlling microvascular permeability during both normal and disease-causing conditions. Her discoveries have significantly advanced the understanding of complex interactions between signaling molecules and endothelial structural elements that regulate vascular barrier function during inflammation, trauma, infection, sepsis, atherosclerosis, and diabetes. She has created innovative techniques, including the cannulated venule model for measuring permeability and protein/DNA transfection to intact isolated microvessels.

Continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health throughout her career, Dr. Yuan has been awarded more than $16.5 million in NIH funding for microcirculation research as a principal investigator over the last 10 years. She publishes papers typically appearing in high-impact journals such as Nature Communications, Circulation, Circulation Research, Cardiovascular Research, and Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology (ATVB).

Last month, Dr. Yuan was among nine USF researchers, and 450 from across the country, named a new fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Through her influential publications, extensive service on NIH grant review panels, successful mentoring of junior scientists, and creation of opportunities for others, Dr. Yuan continues to guide the national research agenda focused on microcirculation.

-Photo by Allison Long, USF Health Communications and Marketing