About Us

About Us

In November 2012, the University of Michigan launched the Center for Advanced Models for Translational Sciences and Therapeutics (CAMTraST). The long-term goal of the Center is to stimulate bench-to-bedside research that sheds light on molecular mechanisms underlying the development and progression of diseases. Discoveries from innovative and multi-disciplinary projects will reveal novel and effective intervention strategies to prevent and treat diseases.


We have assembled a team of talents in molecular biology, embryology, and animal reproduction. Our team members are among the first in the world to establish rabbit embryonic stem cell lines, to generate cloned rabbits, and to produce knockout (KO) pigs. Recently, we have made several breakthroughs in gene targeting in rabbits.

Contact Us

Center for Advanced Models for Translational Sciences and Therapeutics
University of Michigan Medical School
NCRC Building 26, Rm 361S
2800 Plymouth Rd
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2800

Directions to the entrance of Building 18

Email: info.camtrast@umich.edu
Phone: 734-647-5742
Fax: 734-763-7097

Selected Publications

  • Induced pluripotent stem cells with NOTCH1 gene mutation show impaired differentiation into smooth muscle and endothelial cells: Implications for bicuspid aortic valve-related aortopathy. Jiao J, Tian W, Qiu P, Norton EL, Wang MM, Chen YE, Yang B. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2018 Mar 12. pii: S0022-5223(18)30714-1. doi: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2018.02.087.
  • Inflammatory signaling and metabolic regulation by nitro-fatty acids. Rom O, Khoo NKH, Chen YE, Villacorta L. Nitric Oxide. 2018 Mar 22. pii: S1089-8603(17)30329-4. doi: 10.1016/j.niox.2018.03.017.
  • Myeloperoxidase mediated HDL oxidation and HDL proteome changes do not contribute to dysfunctional HDL in Chinese subjects with coronary artery disease. Wang G, Mathew AV, Yu H, Li L, He L, Gao W, Liu X, Guo Y, Byun J, Zhang J, Chen YE, Pennathur S. PLoS One. 2018 Mar 5;13(3):e0193782. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0193782. eCollection 2018.
  • Transcriptomic sequencing reveals diverse adaptive gene expression responses of human vascular smooth muscle cells to nitro-conjugated linoleic acid. Li S, Chang Z, Zhu T, Villacorta L, Li Y, Freeman BA, Chen YE, Zhang J. Physiol Genomics. 2018 Apr 1;50(4):287-295. doi: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00090.2017.
  • Endothelial TFEB (Transcription Factor EB) Positively Regulates Postischemic Angiogenesis. Fan Y, Lu H, Liang W, Garcia-Barrio MT, Guo Y, Zhang J, Zhu T, Hao Y, Zhang J, Chen YE. Circ Res. 2018 Mar 30;122(7):945-957. doi: 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.118.312672.
  • In situ generation, metabolism and immunomodulatory signaling actions of nitro-conjugated linoleic acid in a murine model of inflammation. Villacorta L, Minarrieta L, Salvatore SR, Khoo NK, Rom O, Gao Z, Berman RC, Jobbagy S, Li L, Woodcock SR, Chen YE, Freeman BA, Ferreira AM, Schopfer FJ, Vitturi DA. Redox Biol. 2018 May;15:522-531. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2018.01.005. Epub 2018 Jan 12.
  • Laminar Flow Attenuates Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor Expression in Endothelial Cells. Qiao C, Li S, Lu H, Meng F, Fan Y, Guo Y, Chen YE, Zhang J. Sci Rep. 2018 Feb 5;8(1):2360. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-20885-1.
  • Bmal1 in Perivascular Adipose Tissue Regulates Resting Phase Blood Pressure Through Transcriptional Regulation of Angiotensinogen. Chang L, Xiong W, Zhao X, Fan Y, Guo Y, Garcia-Barrio M, Zhang J, Jiang Z, Lin JD, Chen YE. Circulation. 2018 Jan 25. pii: CIRCULATIONAHA.117.029972. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.117.029972.
  • Sex differences in abdominal aortic aneurysms. Boese AC, Chang L, Yin KJ, Chen YE, Lee JP, Hamblin MH. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 Jun 1;314(6):H1137-H1152. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00519.2017. Epub 2018 Jan 19.
  • MitoNEET in Perivascular Adipose Tissue Blunts Atherosclerosis under Mild Cold Condition in Mice. Xiong W, Zhao X, Garcia-Barrio MT, Zhang J, Lin J, Chen YE, Jiang Z, Chang L. Front Physiol. 2017 Dec 19;8:1032. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2017.01032. eCollection 2017.
  • Apolipoprotein A-1 mimetic peptide 4F promotes endothelial repairing and compromises reendothelialization impaired by oxidized HDL through SR-B1. He D, Zhao M, Wu C, Zhang W, Niu C, Yu B, Jin J, Ji L, Willard B, Mathew AV, Chen YE, Pennathur S, Yin H, He Y, Pan B, Zheng L. Redox Biol. 2018 May;15:228-242. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2017.11.027. Epub 2017 Dec 8.
  • Exome-wide association study of plasma lipids in >300,000 individuals. Liu DJ et al, Nat Genet. 2017 Dec;49(12):1758-1766. doi: 10.1038/ng.3977. Epub 2017 Oct 30.
  • Exome chip meta-analysis identifies novel loci and East Asian-specific coding variants that contribute to lipid levels and coronary artery disease. Lu X et al, Nat Genet. 2017 Dec;49(12):1722-1730. doi: 10.1038/ng.3978. Epub 2017 Oct 30.
  • Krüppel-like factors and vascular wall homeostasis. Fan Y, Lu H, Liang W, Hu W, Zhang J, Chen YE. J Mol Cell Biol. 2017 Oct 1;9(5):352-363. doi: 10.1093/jmcb/mjx037.
  • Bacterial and Pneumocystis Infections in the Lungs of Gene-Knockout Rabbits with Severe Combined Immunodeficiency. Song J, Wang G, Hoenerhoff MJ, Ruan J, Yang D, Zhang J, Yang J, Lester PA, Sigler R, Bradley M, Eckley S, Cornelius K, Chen K, Kolls JK, Peng L, Ma L, Chen YE, Sun F, Xu J. Front Immunol. 2018 Mar 9;9:429. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.00429. eCollection 2018.
  • Genome editing in livestock: Are we ready for a revolution in animal breeding industry? Ruan J, Xu J, Chen-Tsai RY, Li K. Transgenic Res. 2017 Dec;26(6):715-726. doi: 10.1007/s11248-017-0049-7. Epub 2017 Nov 1. Review.
  • Production of immunodeficient rabbits by multiplex embryo transfer and multiplex gene targeting. Song J, Yang D, Ruan J, Zhang J, Chen YE, Xu J. Sci Rep. 2017 Sep 22;7(1):12202. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-12201-0.
  • Multimodal laser-based angioscopy for structural, chemical and biological imaging of atherosclerosis. Savastano LE, Zhou Q, Smith A, Vega K, Murga-Zamalloa C, Gordon D, McHugh J, Zhao L, Wang M, Pandey A, Thompson BG, Xu J, Zhang J, Chen YE, Seibel EJ, Wang TD. Nat Biomed Eng. 2017;1. pii: 0023. doi: 10.1038/s41551-016-0023. Epub 2017 Feb 10. PubMed PMID: 28555172; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5446210.
  • Increased Hepatic Expression of Endothelial Lipase Inhibits Cholesterol Diet-Induced Hypercholesterolemia and Atherosclerosis in Transgenic Rabbits.Wang C, Nishijima K, Kitajima S, Niimi M, Yan H, Chen Y, Ning B, Matsuhisa F, Liu E, Zhang J, Chen YE, Fan J. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2017 May 25. pii: ATVBAHA.117.309139. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.117.309139. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 28546217.
  • Protein-altering and regulatory genetic variants near GATA4 implicated in bicuspid aortic valve. Yang B, Zhou W, Jiao J, Nielsen JB, Mathis MR, Heydarpour M, Lettre G, Folkersen L, Prakash S, Schurmann C, Fritsche L, Farnum GA, Lin M, Othman M, Hornsby W, Driscoll A, Levasseur A, Thomas M, Farhat L, Dubé MP, Isselbacher EM,  Franco-Cereceda A, Guo DC, Bottinger EP, Deeb GM, Booher A, Kheterpal S, Chen YE, Kang HM, Kitzman J, Cordell HJ, Keavney BD, Goodship JA, Ganesh SK, Abecasis G, Eagle KA, Boyle AP, Loos RJF, Eriksson P, Tardif JC, Brummett CM, Milewicz DM, Body SC, Willer CJ. Nat Commun. 2017 May 25;8:15481. doi: 10.1038/ncomms15481. PubMed PMID: 28541271.
  • SysFinder: A customized platform for search, comparison and assisted design of appropriate animal models based on systematic similarity. Yang S, Zhang G, Liu W, Wang Z, Zhang J, Yang D, Chen YE, Sun H, Li Y. J Genet Genomics. 2017  May 20;44(5):251-258. doi: 10.1016/j.jgg.2017.05.001. Epub 2017 May 4. PubMed PMID: 28529081.
  • Deficiency of Cholesteryl Ester Transfer Protein Protects Against Atherosclerosis in Rabbits. Zhang J, Niimi M, Yang D, Liang J, Xu J, Kimura T, Mathew AV, Guo Y, Fan Y, Zhu T, Song J, Ackermann R, Koike Y, Schwendeman A, Lai L, Pennathur S, Garcia-Barrio M, Fan J, Chen YE. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2017  Jun;37(6):1068-1075. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.117.309114. Epub 2017 Apr 20. PubMed PMID: 28428219.
  • Brown Adipose Tissue, Not Just a Heater. Chang L, Garcia-Barrio MT, Chen YE. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2017 Mar;37(3):389-391. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.116.308909. PubMed PMID: 28228444.
  • TFEB inhibits endothelial cell inflammation and reduces atherosclerosis. Lu H, Fan Y, Qiao C, Liang W, Hu W, Zhu T, Zhang J, Chen YE. Sci Signal. 2017 Jan 31;10(464). pii: eaah4214. doi: 10.1126/scisignal.aah4214. PubMed PMID: 28143903.
  • Yes-Associated Protein Inhibits Transcription of Myocardin and Attenuates Differentiation of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell from Cardiovascular Progenitor Cell Lineage. Stem Cells. Wang L, Qiu P, Jiao J, Hirai H, Xiong W, Zhang J, Zhu T, Ma PX, Chen YE, Yang  B. 2017 Feb;35(2):351-361. doi: 10.1002/stem.2484. Epub 2016 Sep 20. PubMed PMID: 27571517.
  • Dual Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Angiogenic Action of miR-15a in Diabetic Retinopathy. Wang Q, Navitskaya S, Chakravarthy H, Huang C, Kady N, Lydic TA, Chen YE, Yin KJ, Powell FL, Martin PM, Grant MB, Busik JV. EBioMedicine. 2016 Sep;11:138-150. doi: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2016.08.013. Epub 2016 Aug 8. PubMed PMID: 27531575; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5049929.
  • Significant Improvement of Antithrombotic Responses to Clopidogrel by Use of a Novel Conjugate as Revealed in an Arterial Model of Thrombosis. Zhang H, Lauver DA, Wang H, Sun D, Hollenberg PF, Chen YE, Osawa Y, Eitzman DT. J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2016 Oct;359(1):11-7. doi: 10.1124/jpet.116.236034. Epub 2016 Aug 10. PubMed PMID: 27511819; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5034710.
  • Deep transcriptomic profiling reveals the similarity between endothelial cells cultured under static and oscillatory shear stress conditions. Qiao C, Meng F, Jang I, Jo H, Chen YE, Zhang J. Physiol Genomics. 2016 Sep 1;48(9):660-6. doi: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00025.2016. Epub 2016 Jul 22. PubMed PMID: 27449656; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5111877.
  • Differentiation defect in neural crest-derived smooth muscle cells in patients with aortopathy associated with bicuspid aortic valves. Jiao J, Xiong W, Wang L, Yang J, Qiu P, Hirai H, Shao L, Milewicz D, Chen YE, Yang B. EBioMedicine. 2016 Aug;10:282-90. doi: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2016.06.045. Epub 2016 Jul 1. PubMed PMID: 27394642; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5006642.
  • Derivation of Patient Specific Pluripotent Stem Cells Using Clinically Discarded  Cumulus Cells. Chang WF, Hwu YM, Xu J, Lin CJ, Wang SW, Cheng AS, Lu J, Lu CH, Sung LY. PLoS One. 2016 Nov 1;11(11):e0165715. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0165715. eCollection 2016. PubMed PMID: 27802323; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5089679.
  • Production of Live Offspring from Vitrified-Warmed Oocytes Collected at Metaphase I Stage. Chang CC, Chang WF, Xu J, Cheng AS, Chang CC, Nagy ZP, Yang CC, Ding ST, Sung LY. PLoS One. 2016 Jun 22;11(6):e0157785. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0157785. eCollection 2016. PubMed PMID: 27333297; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4917218.
  • Hyperlipidemia-associated gene variations and expression patterns revealed by whole-genome and transcriptome sequencing of rabbit models. Wang Z, Zhang J, Li H, Li J, Niimi M, Ding G, Chen H, Xu J, Zhang H, Xu Z, Dai Y, Gui T, Li S, Liu Z, Wu S, Cao M, Zhou L, Lu X, Wang J, Yang J, Fu Y, Yang D, Song J, Zhu T, Li S, Ning B, Wang Z, Koike T, Shiomi M, Liu E, Chen L, Fan J, Chen YE, Li Y. Scientific Reports. 2016. 1;6:26942. doi: 10.1038/srep26942. PMID: 27245873.
  • Identification and characterization of rabbit ROSA26 for gene knock-in and stable reporter gene expression. Yang D, Song J, Zhang JF, Xu J, Zhu T, Wang Z, Lai L, Chen YE. Scientific Reports. 2016. 6:25161. doi: 10.1038/srep25161. PMID: 27117226.
  • RS-1 enhances CRISPR/Cas9- and TALEN-mediated knock-in efficiency. Song J, Yang D, Xu J, Zhu T, Chen YE, Zhang JF, Nat Commun. 2016 Jan 28;7:10548. doi: 10.1038/ncomms10548. PMID: 26817820.
  • Derivation of rabbit embryonic stem cells from vitrified-thawed embryos. Cellular Reprogramming. Du F, Chen CH, Li Y, Hu Y, An LY, Yang L, Zhang JF, Chen YE, Xu J 2015. 17 (6), 453-462. PMID: 26579970.
  • Cardiomyocyte Overexpression of FABP4 Aggravates Pressure Overload-Induced Heart Hypertrophy. Zhang J, Qiao C, Chang L, Guo Y, Fan Y, Villacorta L, Chen YE, Zhang J. PLoS One. 2016 Jun 13;11(6):e0157372. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0157372. eCollection 2016.
  • Angiotensin II Destabilizes Coronary Plaques in Watanabe Heritable Hyperlipidemic Rabbits. Li S, Wang YN, Niimi M, Ning B, Chen Y, Kang D, Waqar AB, Wang Z, Yu Q, Liu E, Zhang J, Shiomi M,Chen YE, Fan J. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2016 May;36(5):810-6.
  • High-Density Lipoproteins: Nature's Multifunctional Nanoparticles. Kuai R, Li D, Chen YE, Moon JJ, Schwendeman A. ACS Nano. 2016 Mar 22;10(3):3015-41.
  • Experimental Biology for the Identification of Causal Pathways in Atherosclerosis. Guo Y, Garcia-Barrio MT, Wang L, Chen YE. Cardiovasc Drugs Ther. 2016 Feb;30(1):1-11.
  • Hepatic Transmembrane 6 Superfamily Member 2 Regulates Cholesterol Metabolism in Mice. Fan Y, Lu H, Guo Y, Zhu T, Garcia-Barrio MT, Jiang Z, Willer CJ, Zhang J, Chen YE. Gastroenterology. 2016 May;150(5):1208-18.
  • Cell-free 3D scaffold with two-stage delivery of miRNA-26a to regenerate critical-sized bone defects. Zhang X, Li Y, Chen YE, Chen J, Ma PX. Nat Commun. 2016 Jan 14;7:10376. doi: 10.1038/ncomms10376.
  • Altered long non-coding RNA transcriptomic profiles in brain microvascular endothelium after cerebral ischemia. Zhang J, Yuan L, Zhang X, Hamblin MH, Zhu T, Meng F, Li Y, Chen YE, Yin KJ. Exp Neurol. 2016 Mar;277:162-70.
  • Nitro-fatty acids in cardiovascular regulation and diseases: characteristics and molecular mechanisms. Villacorta L, Gao Z, Schopfer FJ, Freeman BA, Chen YE. Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). 2016 Jan 1;21:873-89.
  • A Diet-Sensitive BAF60a-Mediated Pathway Links Hepatic Bile Acid Metabolism to Cholesterol Absorption and Atherosclerosis. Meng ZX, Wang L, Chang L, Sun J, Bao J, Li Y, Chen YE, Lin JD. Cell Rep. 2015 Nov 24;13(8):1658-69.
  • The Liver Clock Controls Cholesterol Homeostasis through Trib1 Protein-mediated Regulation of PCSK9/Low Density Lipoprotein Receptor (LDLR) Axis. Ma D, Liu T, Chang L, Rui C, Xiao Y, Li S, Hogenesch JB, Chen YE, Lin JD. J Biol Chem. 2015 Dec 25;290(52):31003-12.
  • Patient-specific cardiovascular progenitor cells derived from integration-free induced pluripotent stem cells for vascular tissue regeneration. Hu J, Wang Y, Jiao J, Liu Z, Zhao C, Zhou Z, Zhang Z, Forde K, Wang L, Wang J, Baylink DJ, Zhang XB, Gao S, Yang B, Chen YE, Ma PX. Biomaterials. 2015 Dec;73:51-9.
  • Ductile electroactive biodegradable hyperbranched polylactide copolymers enhancing myoblast differentiation. Xie M, Wang L, Guo B, Wang Z, Chen YE, Ma PX. Biomaterials. 2015 Dec;71:158-67.
  • Angiogenesis-regulating microRNAs and Ischemic Stroke. Curr Vasc Pharmacol. Yin KJ, Hamblin M, Chen YE. 2015;13(3):352-65.
  • The effect of phospholipid composition of reconstituted HDL on its cholesterol efflux and anti-inflammatory properties. Schwendeman A, Sviridov DO, Yuan W, Guo Y, Morin EE, Yuan Y, Stonik J, Freeman L, Ossoli A, Thacker S, Killion S, Pryor M, Chen YE, Turner S, Remaley AT. J Lipid Res. 2015 Sep;56(9):1727-37.
  • GREGOR: evaluating global enrichment of trait-associated variants in epigenomic features using a systematic, data-driven approach. Schmidt EM, Zhang J, Zhou W, Chen J, Mohlke KL, Chen YE, Willer CJ. Bioinformatics. 2015 Aug 15;31(16):2601-6.
  • Suppression of the SWI/SNF Component Arid1a Promotes Mammalian Regeneration. Cell Stem Cell. Sun X, Chuang JC, Kanchwala M, Wu L, Celen C, Li L, Liang H, Zhang S, Maples T, Nguyen LH, Wang SC, Signer RA, Sorouri M, Nassour I, Liu X, Xu J, Wu M, Zhao Y, Kuo YC, Wang Z, Xing C, Zhu H. 2016 Apr 7;18(4):456-66.
  • Porous nanofibrous poly(L-lactic acid) scaffolds supporting cardiovascular progenitor cells for cardiac tissue engineering. Acta Biomater. Liu Q, Tian S, Zhao C, Chen X, Lei I, Wang Z, Ma PX. 2015 Oct 15;26:105-14. doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2015.08.017.
  • BAF250a Protein Regulates Nucleosome Occupancy and Histone Modifications in Priming Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation. Lei I, West J, Yan Z, Gao X, Fang P, Dennis JH, Gnatovskiy L, Wang W, Kingston RE, Wang Z. J Biol Chem. 2015 Jul 31;290(31):19343-52.
  • Fabrication of tissue-engineered vascular grafts with stem cells and stem cell-derived vascular cells. Wang L, Hu J, Sorek CE, Chen EY, Ma PX, Yang B. Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2016;16(3):317-30.
  • MicroRNA profiling in the left atrium in patients with non-valvular paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. Wang J, Song S, Xie C, Han J, Li Y, Shi J, Xin M, Wang J, Luo T, Meng X, Yang B. BMC Cardiovasc Disord. 2015 Aug 29;15:97. doi: 10.1186/s12872-015-0085-2.
  • Rabbit models for the study of human atherosclerosis: from pathophysiological mechanisms to translational medicine. Fan J, Kitajima S, Watanabe T, Xu J, Zhang J, Liu E, Chen YE. Pharmacol Ther. 2015 Feb; 146:104-19.
  • Telomere elongation and naive pluripotent stem cells achieved from telomerase haplo-insufficient cells by somatic cell nuclear transfer. Sung LY, Chang WF, Zhang Q, Liu CC, Liou JY, Chang CC, Ou-Yang H, Guo R, Fu H, Cheng WT, Ding ST, Chen CM, Okuka M, Keefe DL, Chen YE, Liu L, Xu J. Cell Rep. 2014 Dec 11; 9(5):1603-9.
  • Engineering vascular tissue with functional smooth muscle cells derived from human iPS cells and nanofibrous scaffolds. Wang Y, Hu J, Jiao J, Liu Z, Zhou Z, Zhao C, Chang LJ, Chen YE, Ma PX, Yang B. Biomaterials. 2014 Oct;35 (32):8960-9.
  • Perivascular adipose tissue in vascular function and disease: a review of current research and animal models. Brown NK, Zhou Z, Zhang J, Zeng R, Wu J, Eitzman DT, Chen YE, Chang L. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2014 Aug; 34 (8):1621-30.
  • Non-coding RNAs in cerebral endothelial pathophysiology: emerging roles in stroke. Yin KJ, Hamblin M, Chen YE. Neurochem Int. 2014 Nov;77:9-16.
  • Effective gene targeting in rabbits using RNA-guided Cas9 nucleases. Yang D, Xu J, Zhu T, Fan J, Lai L, Zhang JF, Chen YE, Journal of Molecular Cell Biology. 2014. 6(1):97-9.
  • Rosa26-targeted swine models for stable gene over-expression and Cre-mediated lineage tracing. Li X, Yang Y, Bu L, Guo X, Tang C, Song J, Fan N, Zhao B, Ouyang Z, Liu Z, Zhao Y, Yi X, Quan L, Liu S, Yang Z, Ouyang H, Chen YE, Wang Z, Lai L. Cell Res. 2014 Feb 7. doi: 10.1038/cr.2014.15. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Synergistic effect of trichostatin A and scriptaid on the development of cloned rabbit embryos. Chen CH, Du F, Xu J, Chang WF, Liu CC, Su HY, Lin TA, Ju JC, Cheng WTK, Wu SC, Chen YE, and Sung LY. Theriogenology. 2013. PMID: 23566670
  • Production of Apolipoprotein C-III knockout rabbits using Zinc Finger Nucleases. Yang D, Zhang JF, Xu J, Zhu TQ, Fan YB, Fan JL, and Chen YE. Journal of Visualized Experiments. 2013. (81), e50957, doi:10.3791/50957.