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Yihai CAO

Foreign Academician of CAE
Professor of Vascular Biology, Karolinska Institute

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Targeting angiogenesis for disease therapy: Approaching
clinical issues of cardiovascular disease


We focus our research on angiogenesis, the process of new blood vessel growth, which
is involved in onset and progression of most common human diseases including
cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity, diabetes, and eye disease. Our research
programs emphasize translation from basic discovery to clinical implication aiming for
development of new concepts and paradigms for disease diagnosis and therapy. In this
lecture, I discuss new mechanistic insights into implication of angiogenesis for treating
cardiovascular disease with emphasis of establishing functional networks in the
ischemic myocardium.


Yihai Cao is a professor at the Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. He is a
member of Chinese Academy of Engineering, Academy of Europe, European Academy
of Sciences and Arts, National Academy of Inventors (US), and American Institute of
Medicine and Biological Engineering. Yihai Cao received his medical training from the
Shandong Medical School and his Ph.D. from the Karolinska Institute. He received his
postdoctoral training in Dr. Judah Folkman’s laboratory at the Harvard Medical School.
Cao’s laboratory has focused their interests on studying angiogenesis in tumor growth,
metastasis, and non-malignant diseases. Through mechanistic studies, he aims to define
novel therapeutic targets and resolve clinically unmet demands of antiangiogenic cancer
therapy by proposing new concepts and paradigms. His research interests include
molecular mechanisms of pathological angiogenesis contributing to obesity, metabolic
diseases, diabetic complications, cancer, metastasis, and cardiovascular diseases, with
emphasis on clinical relevance and translational research. He received an honorary
medical doctor degree (M.D.) from Copenhagen University, Denmark in 2006. He is a
guest professor at the Linköping University, Sweden; a guest professor at the Leicester
University, UK; an honorary professor at the Copenhagen University, Denmark; and an
honorary professor at the Shinshu University Japan. He received the Fernström research
prize, the Axel Hirsch Prize in medicine, and a distinguished professor award at the
Karolinska Institutet. Dr. Cao received an ERC-advanced research grant award and the
distinguished NOVO Nordisk-advanced grant award. He has published more than 250
research articles. The average impact factor (IF) of his publications > 12.1 per article.
His scientific articles have been cited for more than 40 500 times. H-index = 100.

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