Qian Shi, PhD, research assistant professor in Endocrinology and Metabolism, received a three-year, $231,000 American Heart Association (AHA) Career Development Award (CDA). With this funding, Shi will explore the protective role of endogenous insulin receptor substrate protein 2 (IRS2) in the heart.
Insulin receptor substrate proteins mediate insulin signaling in the heart. IRS1 and ISR2 may have divergent cardiac roles. Shi contributed to a recent study published in JCI Insight that found while loss of IRS1 leads to cardiac protection, loss of IRS2 exacerbates cardiac hypertrophy and ventricular dysfunction in the context of pressure overload.
Shi will use the CDA funding to further examine the underlying molecular mechanisms of IRS2 on the maintenance of regular heart rhythm. “The accomplishment of proposed work could provide new insights into the previously unappreciated function of IRS2 in heart physiology and disease, which could be a potential new therapeutic target for treating heart disease,” Shi said.
Shi currently works in the lab of Long-Sheng Song, MD, MS, professor in Cardiovascular Medicine and member of the Abboud Cardiovascular Research Center an the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center. “This exciting new direction is independently developed by Dr. Shi,” Song said. “She truly deserves this Career Development Award from the American Heart Association. I am confident Qian will do very well with the project and will provide invaluable information to the field.”
“I would like to thank my mentors Dr. [Dale] Abel and Dr. Song, for their unconditional support, inspiration, and encouragement with this project,” Shi said. “Although this is just a beginning, it gives me confidence to pursue the path of independent research.”