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Zhenheng Guo, PhD


515 C.T. Wethington Bldg, 900 S Limestone St, Lexington, KY 40536-0200


  • Professor
  • Graduate Faculty in Nutritional Sciences
  • Cardiovascular Research Center

College Unit(s)

Other Affiliation(s)
  • CVRC - Core Faculty
  • Nutritional Sciences Graduate Faculty
  • Pharmacology and Nutritional Sciences Primary Faculty

Biography and Education


Hunan Medical School, Changsha, China




University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA



Cell Biology

University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, USA





With a long-term goal of identifying novel therapeutic targets for treatment of cardiovascular diseases, Dr. Guo’s research interest is to use genetically-modified mice and combine with molecular, cellular, and biochemical approaches to study transcriptional regulation and signal transduction in cultured vascular smooth muscle cells, organ culture, and animal models, and the implications in the physiopathology of hypertension, diabetes vascular complications, restenosis, and abdominal aortic aneurysm.

The current research projects in Dr. Guo’s laboratory follow:

The role of smooth muscle iPLA2β in transcriptional regulation of regulator of G protein signaling 2 (RGS2) by angiotensin II in cultured VSMC

The role of smooth muscle iPLA2β in diabetes-associated vascular smooth muscle hypercontractility and hypertension

The role of smooth muscle iPLA2β in initiation and early progression of vascular inflammation and neointima formation

The role of smooth muscle mineralocorticoid receptor in deoxycorticosterone acetate- or aldosterone-salt-induced abdominal aortic aneurysms

The role of smooth muscle BMAL1 in regulation of vascular smooth muscle contractile variability and blood pressure circadian rhythm

Selected Publications

1. Guo Z, Turner C, Castle D (1998) Relocation of the t-SNARE SNAP-23 from lamellipodia-like cell surface projections regulates compound exocytosis in mast cells. Cell 94:537-548. PMCID: PMC Journal - In Process.… 2. Guo Z, Su W, Ma Z, Smith GM, Gong MC (2003) Ca2+-independent Phospholipase A2 Is Required for Agonist-induced Ca2+ Sensitization of Contraction in Vascular Smooth Muscle. J Biol Chem 278:1856-1863. PMCID: PMC Journal - In Process.… 3. Xie Z, Gong MC, Su W, Turk J, Guo Z. (2007) Group VIA phospholipase A2 (iPLA2beta ) participates in angiotensin II-induced transcriptional upregulation of RGS2 in vascular smooth muscle cells. J Biol Chem. 282: 25278-89. PMCID: PMC2096773.… 4. Xie Z, Gong M, Su W, Xie D, Turk J, Guo Z. (2010) Role of Calcium-independent Phospholipase A2β in High Glucose-induced Activation of RhoA, Rho-kinase, and CPI-17 in Cultured Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells and Vascular Smooth Muscle Hypercontractility in Diabetic Animals. J Biol Chem. 285(12):8628-38. PMCID: PMC2838285. 5. Xie Z, Liu D, Liu S, Calderon L, Zhao G, Turk J, Guo Z. (2011) Identification of a cAMP response element in the RGS2 promoter as a Key cis-regulatory element for RGS2 transcriptional regulation by angiotensin II in cultured VSMC. J Biol Chem. 286(52):44646-58. PMCID: PMC3247950. 6. Liu S, Xie Z, Zhao Q, Pang H, Turk J, Calderon L, Su W, Zhao G, Xu H, Gong MC, and Guo Z. (2012) Smooth muscle-specific expression of calcium-independent phospholipase a2beta (ipla2beta) participates in the initiation and early progression of vascular inflammation and neointima formation. J Biol Chem. 287:24739-24753. PMCID: PMC3397901.

Research Gate Pubmed Publications