Gary Pierce

Assistant Professor
Department of Health & Human Physiology
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
University of Iowa
PhD, University of Florida
412 FH

The goal of my research is to determine the cellular and molecular mechanisms that contribute to vascular endothelial dysfunction and increased large elastic artery (e.g., aorta, carotid arteries) stiffness with aging, obesity and/or prediabetes in humans. We use an integrative experimental approach, including non-invasive and semi-invasive approaches to assess vascular function in human subjects and study cells/tissues (endothelial and mononuclear cells, sera, adipose) from humans to investigate the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved. A major focus is to translate basic science findings to clinically relevant treatments in humans by testing the efficacy of lifestyle, dietary and pharmacological interventions on cardiovascular structure and function in adults at high risk for developing cardiovascular disease. Lastly, we are also exploring the role of aortic stiffness and central pulsatile hemodynamics in mediating cardiovascular target organ damage in obese youth.