Distinguished Scientist: Hanjun Wang, MD

February 16, 2021

Image with caption: Hanjun Wang, MD

Hanjun Wang, MD

This profile is part of a series to highlight the researchers who will be honored at a ceremony for UNMC's 2020 Scientist Laureate, Distinguished Scientist and New Investigator Award recipients.

  • Name: Hanjun Wang, MD
  • Title: Associate professor, UNMC Department of Anesthesiology, College of Medicine
  • Joined UNMC: 2007
  • Hometown: Jiangsu, China

The Distinguished Scientist Award

The Distinguished Scientist Award, sponsored by UNMC Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, MD, recognizes researchers who have been among the most productive scientists at UNMC during the past five years.

Research focus:

  • Neuro-modulation and cardiopulmonary diseases

The goal of my research is: to develop some novel neuro-modulation therapies to treat cardiopulmonary diseases and chronic pain. Our laboratory has a long track record in exploring the role of skeletal muscle afferents in mediating cardiopulmonary dysfunction and exercise intolerance during physical activity in chronic heart failure (CHF). In collaboration with Iraklis Pipinos, MD, in the UNMC Department of Surgery, we are exploring a new role of skeletal muscle afferents in mediating "claudication" in peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Most importantly, our jointed teams are developing a novel therapeutic concept to treat "claudication" by selective ablation of skeletal muscle afferents with an ultrapotent neurotoxin, resineferitoxin (RTX).

On the other hand, in collaboration with the lab of Irving Zucker, PhD, we also had demonstrated a therapeutic potential of using RTX to treat cardiovascular dysfunction in CHF and hypertension. Recently in collaboration with the lab of Dong Wang, PhD, we are exploring a new therapeutic concept that removal of neural inflammation in peripheral sensory/autonomic ganglia by local delivery of some anti-inflammatory nanomedicine can improve cardiopulmonary dysfunction in CHF and acute lung injury.

My research will make a difference because: we have a very special interest in the role of sensory/visceral nerves in modulating cardiopulmonary activity in various diseases such as heart failure, lung injury, peripheral arterial disease and hypertension. The potential contribution of sensory dysfunction to the development of these diseases has been largely ignored in this field. My research tries to provide more mechanistic understanding how sensory dysfunction causes or contributes to the further development of various cardiopulmonary diseases. Eventually, we want to develop some novel neuro-modulation therapies to treat these diseases.

The best advice I've ever been given is:

"People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are."-Steve Jobs

Three things you may not know about me are:

  • I love fishing and playing chess.
  • I am pretty good at cooking.
  • My favorite sport is soccer. Lionel Messi is my favorite soccer player.

Babu Guda
February 16, 2021 at 8:54 PM

Congratulations Hanjun! Very well deserved.

Rocky Esteraich
February 16, 2021 at 1:02 PM

Congrats Dr. Wang!

Shuai Li
February 16, 2021 at 12:05 PM

Congratulations, Dr. Wang! Well deserved achievements!

Gurudutt Pendyala
February 16, 2021 at 9:53 AM

Congratulations Hanjun !

Dong Wang
February 16, 2021 at 8:56 AM

Congratulations, Hanjun! Wonderful achievement. It has been a great pleasure working with you!

Irving H Zucker
February 16, 2021 at 8:41 AM

Congratulations Hanjun. May the next 10 grants come rapidly-:)

Alicia Schiller
February 16, 2021 at 8:00 AM

Congratulations, Dr. Wang! Well deserved!

Cindy Norton
February 16, 2021 at 7:54 AM

Congratulation Dr. Wang - Well deserved!

Harold Schultz
February 16, 2021 at 7:47 AM

Congratulations Hanjun!

Steven J. Lisco
February 16, 2021 at 7:40 AM

Congratulations Hanjun! Very well deserved. The impact of your research on the future of heart and lung critical care cannot be understated! Proud to have you in in the Department of Anesthesiology!