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Microscopic image of a stained section

Yao-Z Lab

Welcome to the Yao Lab

Example histology slideOur lab has been focused on the basic and translational studies of bone related diseases and breast cancer.
Bone is a dynamic structure that undergoes constant remodeling throughout life, in which mature bone tissue is removed by osteoclasts, and new bone tissue is formed by osteoblasts (OBs). Imbalance of bone remodeling caused by the enhanced osteoclastic bone resorption and /or reduced osteoblastic bone formation is the basis of trabecular and cortical bone loss in a variety of bone diseases, including but not limited to osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, bone metastatic cancers, aseptic loosening of arthroplasty and periodontal disease. Our studies are focused on cytokines (RANKL, TNFα and TGFβ1) regulations of TNF receptor-associated factors (TRAFs) and NF-κB signaling in both osteoclasts and osteoblasts as well as their reciprocal interactions with immune cells (macrophages, T cells and B cells) in order to develop a new approach with dual anti-resorptive and anabolic effects to bone for the treatment of bone diseases with bone loss.

Example of stained histological sectionBreast cancer is the most common cancer and the second leading cause of all cancer death in women. The primary breast cancer can be surgically removed. But the greatest challenging issues in treating breast cancer are the recurrence and metastasis after surgery, causing about 90% of all breast cancer deaths. Our studies are focused on the mechanisms by which TNFα and lipopolysaccharides (LPS) regulate tumor microenvironment to promote the development of metastatic breast cancer, what factors limit TNFα- and LPS- induced apoptosis, and development of novel adoptive macrophage transfer approach for the targeted therapy of metastatic breast cancer.

We are currently recruiting postdoctoral researchers, staff scientists, visiting scholars and graduate students.
Please contact Dr. Yao for more information.

Lab Members

Zhenqiang Yao, B.Med., Ph.D.

Zhenqiang Yao, B.Med., Ph.D.
Principal Investigator


  • Osteoimmunology
  • breast cancer metastasis
  • Development of novel bone-targeted therapeutic agents for the treatment of bone diseases with bone loss
  • Role of B cells in age-related osteoporosis
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