Zhongjie Sun, MD, PhD, FAHA


  • Professor of Physiology
  • Vice Chair for Research
  • Chair, Research Committee
  • Director, The Robert & Mary Cade Laboratory 


  • MD, Jining Medical College, Jining, P. R. China (1983) 
  • MS, Tongji Medical University, P. R. China (1990) 
  • PhD, Shanghai Medical University, P. R. China (1999) 
  • Postdoctoral, University of Florida, USA (1994-1998)

Teaching and Mentoring:

Dr. Sun's teaching interests include integrative cardiovascular/renal physiology and genomics. He mentors graduate students and trains postdoctoral fellows in a broad area of physiology (cardiovascular, renal and endocrine physiology). Dr. Sun has a unique vision for training graduate students. In his lab, graduate students and postdoctors are trained for integrative physiology that includes whole animal, cellular, and molecular research; thus they are prepared to be leaders in biological and biomedical sciences in the 21st century, and to teach traditional systems physiology. 

Graduate students, medical students, undergraduate students, and high school students are welcome to join Dr. Sun's lab for research training. The Sun lab has a dynamic, creative, and productive research team in cardiovascular/renal physiology and neuroscience

Research Summary:

Dr. Sun's research interests are in the study of molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in the regulation of blood pressure. Application of molecular, transgenic and integrative approaches to the understanding of complex physiological function represents the central theme of most of his current research. His recent effort is on the identification and characterization of genetic and environmental factors and their interaction in the pathogenesis of hypertension and diabetes.

Dr. Sun's Lab


1.  Yuechi Xu and Zhongjie Sun. Molecular basis of klotho, from gene to function.Endocrine Rev.    36:174-193, 2015. PMID: 25695404.

2.  Yi Lin and Zhongjie Sun. In vivo pancreatic β cell-specific expression of anti-aging gene klotho: a novel approach for preserving b cells in type II diabetes. Diabetes. 64:1444-1458, 2015.PMID: 25377875.

3.  Xiaoli Zhou, Kai Chen, Han Lei and Zhongjie Sun. Klotho gene deficiency causes salt-sensitive hypertension via MCP-1/CCR2 mediated inflammation. J Am Soc Nephrol. 26:121-132, 2015. PMID: 24904083.

4.  Rohan Varshney, Quaisar Ali, Chengxiang Wu and Zhongjie Sun. Monocrotaline-induced Pulmonary Hypertension Involves Downregulation of Anti-aging Protein Klotho and eNOS activity. Hypertension. 68:1255-1263, 2016.PMID: 27620389

5.  Patrick Crosswhite, Kai Chen and Zhongjie Sun. AAV delivery of TNFα shRNA attenuates cold-induced pulmonary hypertension and pulmonary arterial remodeling. Hypertension. 64;1141-1150, 2014. PMID: 25185133.

6.  Zhongjie Sun. Platelet TLR4, a critical link in pulmonary arterial hypertension. Circ Res. 114:1551-1553, 2014.PMID: 246852123.PMC4071958.

7.  Patrick Crosswhite and Zhongjie Sun.Inhibition of phosphodiesterase 1attenuates cold-induced pulmonary hypertension.Hypertension. 61:585-592,2013. PMID: 23319544.

8.  Jianglei Chen, Yi Lin, Zhongjie Sun. Ant-aging gene klotho deficiency promotes aortic valve fibrosis through AMPKa-mediated activation of RUNX2. Aging Cell. 15:853-860, 2016. PMID: 27242197.

9.  Jun Fan and Zhongjie Sun. The anti-aging gene klotho regulates proliferation and differentiation of adipose-derived stem cell.  Stem Cells. 34:1615-1625, 2016. PMID: 26865060.

Yi Lin, Jianglei Chen and Zhongjie Sun.  Anti-aging gene klotho deficiency promotes high fat diet-induced arterial stiffening via inactivation of AMP-activated protein kinase. Hypertension. 67:564-573, 2016. PMID: 26781278.

Funding Agencies:

  • American Heart Association 
  • Reynolds Oklahoma Center on Aging 
  • Robert & Mary Cade Foundation 
  • Department of Defense


Office telephone: (405) 271-2226 x 56237 
Email: zhongjie-sun@ouhsc.edu