Yun Guan, PhD

Editorial Board Member

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, USA

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Department / University Information


Yun Guan is Assistant Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology/Critical Care Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Guan received his medical training in Capital University of Medical Sciences in China. He then received his M.S. degree from Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, China. In year 1998, he started his Ph.D. training in Program of Neuroscience at University of Maryland School of Medicine, mentored by Dr. Ronald Dubner and Dr. Ke Ren. After graduation, he completed a post-doctoral training in Dr. Srinivasa N Raja’s laboratory at the Department of Anesthesiology/CCM, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, in year 2005. He was a research assistant professor at University of Maryland, Baltimore, prior to his re-grouping with the pain research team at the Johns Hopkins University in 2006.

Research Interest

The long-term goal of Dr. Guan's research is to elucidate fully the peripheral (primary sensory neuron), spinal (secondary sensory neuron) and supraspinal (descending pain modulation) mechanisms of chronic pain and develop better strategies and novel targets for treatment of pathological pain conditions. His research is multidisciplinary in nature and encompasses electrophysiological, molecular biological, immunocytochemical, and behavioral pharmacological approaches to study neurobiological mechanisms of pain and hyperalgesia after tissue or nerve injury. He currently has a number of on-going research projects: 1) Using complementary animal behavioral, electrophysiological, and molecular biological approaches to assess the therapeutic utility of MrgC agonist for the treatment of neuropathic pain and to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the drug action; 2) Exploring the mechanisms of mu-opioid receptor-mediated analgesia in neuropathic pain, with particular emphasis on roles of mu- and delta-opioid receptor interaction in peripheral morphine tolerance; 3) Studying the neurophysiologic and neurochemical mechanisms and identifying the optimal stimulation parameters for spinal cord stimulation-induced analgesia in a model of chronic neuropathic pain, with instrumental and financial support from Medtronic inc; 4) Establishing in vivo electrophysiologic recording and imaging techniques with which to examine the functions of distinct subgroups of DRG neurons in acute pain and chronic neuropathic pain conditions. Subgroups of DRG neurons are identified by using novel markers in MrgA3-tdTomato, MrgD-GFP, Pirt2-eGFP, and Pirt-GCaMP3 mouse lines. 5) Studying pain after lumbar-spinal cord Injury by establishing novel animal model and exploring new treatment strategy. Dr. Guan and his collaborators have published more than 30 articles and reviews in peer-reviewed journals such as: Anesthesiology, Journal of Neuroscience, Nature, Neuroscience, PNAS and Pain.