Dr. Yihong Wan obtained her Ph.D. degree in Molecular Biology, Biophysics and Genetics at the University of Colorado Health Science Center, Denver. Upon graduation, she conducted postdoctoral research with Dr. Ron Evans at the Salk Institute, La Jolla, California. Dr. Wan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology, and a faculty member in the Green Center for Reproductive Biology, the Integrative Biology Program, the Cancer Biology Program, and the MSTP Program at UTSW. She is also an adjunct faculty at Texas A&M Health Science Center.

Dr. Wan’s research focuses on the differentiation of osteoclasts and osteoblasts from hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells in the context of skeletal physiology and bone regeneration, with the goal of a better prevention and treatment of osteoporosis and bone metastasis of cancers. Her investigations reveal how hormones, transcription factors and pharmacological agents impact bone health.

Another aspect of Dr. Wan’s research focuses on the metabolic regulation of breast milk and neonatal inflammation.  Her investigations reveal that genetic or dietary defects in the mothers can turn the good milk bad that triggers systemic inflammation in the nursing newborns. These findings will illuminate new knowledge for infantile disorders and inflammatory diseases. 

Dr. Wan is a recipient of the Virginia Murchison Linthicum Scholar Award in Medical Research, the Becton Dickinson Biosciences Research Award, the John Haddad Young Investigator Award from the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, the Basil O’Connor Scholar Award from March of Dimes Foundation, and the Eugenia Resemberg Award from the Endocrine Society, among others. She has been invited to speak at international meetings, such as Keystone Symposia, Cold Spring Harbor Conference, Gordon Research Conference and FASEB Meeting. The funding for her research comes from several sources including NIH, the March of Dimes, the Welch Foundation and the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.


Graduate School University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (2002), Molecular Biology

Research Interest

  • Bone Homeostasis and Regeneration
  • Bone Metastasis of Cancers
  • Inflammation
  • Metabolism
  • Nuclear Receptors
  • Stem Cells
  • Transcription


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Honors & Awards

  • Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Research Award
    March of Dimes (2010)
  • Individual Investigator Award
    Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (2010)
  • John Haddad Young Investigator Award
    American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (2009)
  • Virginia Murchison Linthicum Scholar in Medical Research
    UTSW Endowed Scholar (2008)
  • BD Research Grant Award
    Becton Dickinson Biosciences (2007)

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Society for Bone and Mineral Research
  • European Calcified Tissue Society
  • The Endocrine Society