Ph.D., Harvard University
- Lab: Irvine 303/316
- Genetic regulation of mammalian neurovascular development, physiology and pathophysiology
Interdependent development and functions of the mammalian nervous and vascular systems are tightly coordinated. The brain vasculature provides a critical and expansive blood supply to support neuronal metabolism and function, and vascular lesions within the brain are often accompanied by neurological dysfunction. Our lab is interested in understanding how these systems influence one another – e.g., how diverse neural and vascular cell populations respond to cues from one another. The lab currently studies neurovascular regulation in the context of brain arteriovenous malformation (AVM), a human vascular disease characterized by direct delivery of blood from artery to vein (without intervening capillaries), vessel entanglements, and often accompanied by neurological deficit. We are using genetic models of brain AVM to determine molecular and cellular mechanisms that regulate neurovascular development and function – and mechanisms involved in neurovascular pathogenesis – using mouse genetics, molecular and cell biological, and imaging approaches.
Cuervo, H., Nielsen, C.M., Simonetto, D.A., Ferrell, L., Shah, V.H. and Wang, R.A. 2016. Endothelial Notch signaling is essential to prevent hepatic vascular malformation in mice. Hepatology 64(4):1302-1316.
Nielsen, C.M., Huang, L., Murphy, P.A., Lawton, M.T. and Wang, R.A. 2016. Mouse models of cerebral arteriovenous malformations. Stroke 47:293-300.
Murphy, P.A., Kim, T.N., Huang, L., Nielsen, C.M., Lawton, M.T., Adams, R.H., Schaffer, C.B. and Wang, R.A. 2014. Constitutively active Notch4 elicits brain arteriovenous malformations through enlargement of capillary-like vessels. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 111:18007-18012.
Nielsen, C.M., Cuervo, H., Ding, V.W., Kong, Y., Huang, E.J. and Wang, R.A. 2014. Deletion of Rbpj from postnatal endothelium leads to abnormal arteriovenous shunting in mice. Development 141:3782-3792.
Nielsen, C.M. and Dymecki, S.M. 2010. Sonic hedgehog is required for vascular outgrowth in the hindbrain choroid plexus. Developmental Biology 340:430-437.