Physiology and Pharmacology

Dong Hyun Kim, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Phone:  419-383-4424
Fax:  419-383-2871



  • B.A., Biomedical Science, 1995, Hallym University, Korea
  • M.S., Microbiology, 1997, Korea University, Korea
  • Ph.D., Biochemistry, 2005, Korea University, Korea


  • 2009 - Present:  Assistant Professor, Department of Physiology & Pharmacology, University of Toledo, College of Medicine, Toledo, OH (Oct 2009)

  • 2007 - 2009:  Postdoctoral Fellow, Gene Therapy Program, Department of Pharmacology, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY

  • 2006 - 2007:  Postdoctoral Fellow, Lab of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, Samsung Biomedical Research Institute, Samsung Medical Center, Seoul, Korea

  • 2000 - 2006:  Researcher, Lab of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, Samsung Biomedical Research Institute, Samsung Medical Center, Seoul, Korea

Research Interests

  • Adult Stem Cells from Human Bone Marrow, Cord Blood, Fat tissues and other tissues.
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) and Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs) for therapeutic resources.
  • Adipogenesis of MSCs from human bone marrow.

The laboratory is focused on vascular dysfunction which is a prelude to cardiovascular and metabolic diseases including hypertension, stroke, diabetes and obesity, the role of oxidative stress, inflammatory cytokines, hypoadiponectinemia and lipid-derived from arachidonic acid in the initiation of vascular dysfunction. The central hypothesis focuses on heme oxygenase (the most potent anti-oxidant gene in human body)-adiponectin-EET plays an essential role in vascular function. We believe that heme oxygenase acts as a molecular "switch" to genetically reprogram the vascular endothelium through activation of a unique signaling cascade with amplification of protective circuits to provide resistance to vascular dysfunction. Heme oxygenase also serves as the mediator of cross-talk between adipose tissue and the vasculature.  Studies in this lab focuses on the impact of adipocyte dysfunction on vascular endothelial integrity through the prism of heme oxygenase and stem cell applications.


  • Vanella L, Kim DH, Sodhi K, Barbagallo I, Burgess A, Falck JR, Schwartzman ML, Abraham NG.  (2011)  Crosstalk between EET and HO- downregulates Bach1 and adipogenic marker expression in mesenchymal stem cell derived adipocytes.  Prostaglandins and Other Lipid MediatorsIn Press.   doi:10.1016/j.prostaglandins.2011.07.005.
  • Kim DH, Vanella L, Inoue K, Burgess A, Gotlinger K, Manthati VL, Koduru SR, Zeldin DC, Falck JR, Schwartzman ML, Abraham NG.  EET-Agonist regulates human mesenchymal stem cells;derived adipocytes through activation of HO-1-pAKT signaling.  Stem Cells Dev. 2010 Dec; 19(12): 1863-1873.  doi:10.1089/scd.2010.0098.
  • Yim YS, Noh YH, Kim DH, Lee MW, Cheuh HW, Lee SH, Yoo KH, Jung HL, Sung KW, Choi SJ, Oh WI, Yang YS, Koo HH. (2010)  Correlation between the immature charactgeristics of umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells and engraftment of hematopoietic stem cells in NOD/SCID mice.  Transplantation Proceedings, 42, 2753-2758.  doi:10.1016/j.transproceed.2010.05.146.
  • Burgess A, Li M, Vanella L, Kim DH, Rezzani R, Rodella L, Sodhi K, Canestraro M, Martasek P, Peterson SJ, Kappas A, Abraham NG.  (2010) Adipocyte heme oxygenase-1 induction attenuates metabolic syndrome in both male and female obese mice. Hypertension Nov;56;1124-1130. DOI: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.110.151423.
  • Sodhi K, Inoue K, Gotlinger GH, Canestraro M, Vanella L, Kim DH, Manthati VL, Koduru SR, Falck JR, Schwartzman ML, Abraham NG. (2009) Epoxyeiocsatrienoic acid agonist rescues the metabolic syndrome phenotype of HO-2-null mice.  J Pharmacol Exp Ther Dec;331(3);906-916.
  • Peterson SJ, Kim DH, Li M, Positano V, Vanella L, Rodella LF, Piccolomini F, Puri N, Gastaldelli A, Kusmic C, L'Abbate A, Abraham NG.  (2009)  The L-4F mimetic peptide prevents insulin resistance through increased levels of HO-1, pAMPK, and pAKT in obese mice.  J Lipid Res. Jul;50 (7): 1293-1304. Epub Feb 17.
  • Barbagallo I, Vanella A, Peterson SJ, Kim DH, Tibullo D, Giallongo C, Vanella L, Parrinello N, Palumbo GA, Raimondo FD, Abraham NG, Asprinio D.  (2009)  Overexpression of heme oxygenase-1 increases human oseteoblast stem cell differentiation.  Bone Miner Metab [Epub ahead of print].
  • Li M, Kim DH, Tsenovoy PL, Peterson SJ, Rezzani R, Rodella LF, Aronow WS, Ikehara S, Abraham NG.  (2008)  Treatment of obese diabetic mice with a heme oxygenase inducer reduces visceral and subcutaneous adiposity, increases adiponectin levels, and improves insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance.  Diabetes Jun; 57(6): 1526-1535. Epub Mar 28.
  • Nicolai A, Li M, Kim DH, Peterson SJ, Vanella L, Positano V, Gastaldelli A, Rezzani R, Rodella LF, Drummond G, Kusmic C, L'Abbate A, Kappas A, Abraham NG.  (2009)  Heme oxygenase-1 induction remodels adipose tissue and improves insulin sensitivity in obesity-induced diabetic rats.  Hypertension Mar; 53(3): 508-515. Epub Jan 26.
  • Vanella L, Kim DH, Asprinio D, Peterson SJ, Barbagallo I, Vanella A, Goldstein DS, Ikehara S, Abraham NG.  (2009)  HO-1 expression increases mesenchymal stem cell-derived osteoblast and decrease adipocyte lineages. Bone Novenber 2009.
  • Peterson SJ, Drummond G, Kim DH, Li M, Kruger AL, Ikehara S, Abraham NG.  (2008) L-4F treatment reduces adiposity, increases adiponectin levels, and improves insulin sensitivity in obese mice.  J Lipid Res. Aug;49 (8): 1658-1669. Epub Apr 19.
  • Kim DH, Burgess AP, Li M, Tsenovoy PL, Addabbo F, McClung JA, Puri N, Abraham NG.  (2008)  Heme oxygenase-mediated increases in adiponectin decrease fat content and inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-6 in Zucker rats and reduce adipogenesis in human mesenchymal stem cells.  J Pharmacol Exp Ther. Jun;325 (3): 833-840. Epub Mar 11.
  • Kim DH, Yoo KH, Yim, YS, Choi J, Jung HL, Sung KW, Yang S-E, Oh W, Yang, Y-S, Kim S-H, Choi S-Y, Koo HH.  (2006)  Cotransplanted bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) enhanced engraftment of hematopoietic stem cells in a MSC-dose dependent manner in NOD/SCID mice.  J Korean Med Sci 21:1000-1004.
  • Choi J, Hwang YK, Sung KW, Kim DH, Yoo KH, Jung HL, Koo HH.  (2005)  Aven overexpression: Association with poor prognosis in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.  Leukemia Research 30:1019-1025.
  • Jang YK, Jung DH, Jung MH, Kim DH, Yoo KH, Sung KW, Koo HH, Oh W, YangYS, Yang S-E.  (2005)  Mesenchymal stem cells feeder layer from human umbilical cord blood for ex vivo xpanded growth and proliferation of hematopoietic progenitor cells.  Ann Hematol 85:212-225.
  • Kim DH, Yoo KH, Choi, KS, Choi J, Yun Choi S-Y, Yang S-E, Yang Y-S, Im HJ, Kim KH, Jung HL, Sung KW, Koo HH (2005)  Gene expression profile of cytokine and growth factor during differentiation of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell.  Cytokine 31:119-126.

Last Updated: 6/26/15