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Keith A. Youker, PhD

Assistant Research Professor of Cardiovascular Sciences, Academic Institute
Assistant Research Member, Research Institute
Houston Methodist


Dr. Keith Youker earned his Ph.D. in Cardiovascular Sciences from Baylor College of Medicine and was the first graduate from this program. The program initially used a broad knowledge approach to training including course work from medical school, graduate school, and cardiovascular core courses designed for basic scientists to work in clinical cardiovascular research. His dissertation work earned him a nomination for the Sigma Xi “Excellence in Science Dissertation Award”. Since graduation, Dr. Youker has been a faculty member in both the departments of Medicine and Surgery at Baylor College of Medicine prior to joining Houston Methodist Hospital. He has served as an ad hoc reviewer for the journals of Circulation, American Journal of Pathology, ASAIO and the Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation. Dr. Youker’s primary focus has been in heart failure with a particular interest in inflammation and its role in the progression of heart failure. Dr. Youker prefers a hands-on approach in the laboratory and is expert in many areas from electron microscopy to molecular biology techniques and has earned a reputation of excellence in cardiovascular immunopathology research.

Description of Research

Dr. Youker focuses on research of the immune system in heart failure and metabolism in heart failure.

Areas Of Expertise

Transplantation LVAD Immunology Cardiac Heart Failure
Education & Training

PhD, Baylor College of Medicine

Vulnerable Atherosclerotic Plaque Imaging by Small-Molecule High-Affinity Positron Emission Tomography Radiopharmaceutical
Yang, Z, Li, F, Yelamanchili, D, Zeng, Z, Rosales, C, Youker, KA, Shen, H, Ferrari, M, Mahmarian, J, Pownall, HJ, Hamilton, DJ & Li, Z 2019, advanced therapeutics, vol. 2, no. 8.

Erratum: Inducible lung epithelial resistance requires multisource reactive oxygen species generation to protect against viral infections (mBio, (2018) 9(3), e00696-18, 10.1128/mBio.00696-18)
Kirkpatrick, CT, Wang, Y, Leiva Juarez, MM, Shivshankar, P, Pantaleón García, J, Plumer, AK, Kulkarni, VV, Ware, HH, Gulraiz, F, Chavez Cavasos, MA, Martinez Zayas, G, Wali, S, Rice, AP, Liu, H, Tour, JM, Sikkema, WKA, Cruz Solbes, AS, Youker, KA, Tuvim, MJ, Dickey, BF & Evans, SE 2019, mBio, vol. 10, no. 2, e00496-19.

Mitochondrial hyperacetylation in the failing hearts of obese patients mediated partly by a reduction in SIRT3: The involvement of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore
García-Rivas, G, Castillo, EC, Morales, JA, Chapoy-Villanueva, H, Silva-Platas, C, Treviño-Saldaña, N, Guerrero-Beltrán, CE, Bernal-Ramírez, J, Torres-Quintanilla, A, García, N, Youker, K & Torre-Amione, G 2019, , Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry, vol. 53, no. 3, pp. 465-479.

Small molecule disruption of G protein ß? subunit signaling reprograms human macrophage phenotype and prevents autoimmune myocarditis in rats
Karuppagounder, V, Bajpai, A, Meng, S, Arumugam, S, Sreedhar, R, Giridharan, VV, Guha, A, Bhimaraj, A, Youker, KA, Palaniyandi, SS, Karmouty-Quintana, H, Kamal, F, Spiller, KL, Watanabe, K & Thandavarayan, RA 2018, , PLoS ONE, vol. 13, no. 7, e0200697.

Efficacy of sustained delivery of GC-1 from a Nanofluidic system in a spontaneously obese non-human primate: a case study
Filgueira, CS, Bruno, G, Smith, ZW, Chua, YX, Ballerini, A, Folci, M, Gilbert, AL, Jain, P, Sastry, JK, Nehete, PN, Shelton, KA, Hill, LR, Ali, A, Youker, KA & Grattoni, A 2018, , Biomedical Microdevices, vol. 20, no. 2, 49.

Inducible lung epithelial resistance requires multisource reactive oxygen species generation to protect against viral infections
Kirkpatrick, CT, Wang, Y, Leiva Juarez, MM, Shivshankar, P, Pantaleón García, J, Plumer, AK, Kulkarni, VV, Ware, HH, Gulraiz, F, Chavez Cavasos, MA, Martinez Zayes, G, Wali, S, Rice, AP, Liu, H, Tour, JM, Sikkema, WKA, Cruz Solbes, AS, Youker, KA, Tuvim, MJ, Dickey, BF & Evans, SE 2018, , mBio, vol. 9, no. 3, e00696-18.

Functionally redundant control of cardiac hypertrophic signaling by inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors
Garcia, MI, Karlstaedt, A, Chen, JJ, Amione-Guerra, J, Youker, KA, Taegtmeyer, H & Boehning, D 2017, , Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, vol. 112, pp. 95-103.

Rapamycin nanoparticles localize in diseased lung vasculature and prevent pulmonary arterial hypertension
Segura-Ibarra, V, Amione-Guerra, J, Cruz-Solbes, AS, Cara, FE, Iruegas-Nunez, DA, Wu, S, Youker, KA, Bhimaraj, A, Torre-Amione, G, Ferrari, M, Karmouty-Quintana, H, Guha, A & Blanco, E 2017, , International Journal of Pharmaceutics, vol. 524, no. 1-2, pp. 257-267.

AIBP Limits Angiogenesis Through ?-Secretase-Mediated Upregulation of Notch Signaling
Mao, R, Meng, S, Gu, Q, Araujo-Gutierrez, R, Kumar, S, Yan, Q, Almazan, F, Youker, KA, Fu, Y, Pownall, HJ, Cooke, JP, Miller, YI & Fang, L 2017, , Circulation Research, vol. 120, no. 11, pp. 1727-1739.

Epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and endothelial to mesenchymal transition (EndMT): Role and implications in kidney fibrosis
Cruz-Solbes, AS & Youker, KA 2017, . in RK Miller (ed.), Kidney Development and Disease. vol. 60, Results and Problems in Cell Differentiation, vol. 60, Springer Verlag, pp. 345-372.

Inhibition of hyaluronan synthesis attenuates pulmonary hypertension associated with lung fibrosis
Collum, SD, Chen, NY, Hernandez, AM, Hanmandlu, A, Sweeney, H, Mertens, TCJ, Weng, T, Luo, F, Molina, JG, Davies, J, Horan, IP, Morrell, NW, Amione-Guerra, J, Al-Jabbari, O, Youker, K, Sun, W, Rajadas, J, Bollyky, PL, Akkanti, BH, Jyothula, S, Sinha, N, Guha, A & Karmouty-Quintana, H 2017, , British Journal of Pharmacology, vol. 174, no. 19, pp. 3284-3301.

Pulmonary Hypertension Associated with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Current and Future Perspectives
Collum, SD, Amione-Guerra, J, Cruz-Solbes, AS, Difrancesco, A, Hernandez, AM, Hanmandlu, A, Youker, K, Guha, A & Karmouty-Quintana, H 2017, , Canadian Respiratory Journal, vol. 2017, 1430350.

MicroRNA-126 overexpression rescues diabetes-induced impairment in efferocytosis of apoptotic cardiomyocytes
Suresh Babu, S, Amirthalingam Thandavarayan, R, Joladarashi, D, Jeyabal, P, Krishnamurthy, S, Bhimaraj, A, Youker, KA & Krishnamurthy, P 2016, , Scientific Reports, vol. 6, 36207.

Macrophage bone morphogenic protein receptor 2 depletion in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and Group III pulmonary hypertension
Chen, NY, Collum, SD, Luo, F, Weng, T, Le, TT, Hernandez, AM, Philip, K, Molina, JG, Garcia-Morales, LJ, Cao, Y, Ko, TC, Amione-Guerra, J, Al-Jabbari, O, Bunge, RR, Youker, KA, Bruckner, BA, Hamid, R, Davies, J, Sinha, N & Karmouty-Quintana, H 2016, , American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology, vol. 311, no. 2, pp. 238-254.

MicroRNA-9 inhibits hyperglycemia-induced pyroptosis in human ventricular cardiomyocytes by targeting ELAVL1
Jeyabal, P, Thandavarayan, RA, Joladarashi, D, Suresh Babu, S, Krishnamurthy, S, Bhimaraj, A, Youker, KA, Kishore, R & Krishnamurthy, P 2016, , Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, vol. 471, no. 4, pp. 423-429.

Combination of angiotensin II and l-NG-nitroarginine methyl ester exacerbates mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress to cause heart failure
Hamilton, DJ, Zhang, A, Li, S, Cao, TN, Smith, JA, Vedula, I, Cordero-Reyes, AM, Youker, KA, Torre-Amione, G & Gupte, AA 2016, American Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology, vol. 310, no. 6, pp. H667-H680.

Rnd3/RhoE Modulates Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1a/Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Signaling by Stabilizing Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1a and Regulates Responsive Cardiac Angiogenesis
Yue, X, Lin, X, Yang, T, Yang, X, Yi, X, Jiang, X, Li, X, Li, T, Guo, J, Dai, Y, Shi, J, Wei, L, Youker, KA, Torre-Amione, G, Yu, Y, Andrade, KC & Chang, J 2016, , Hypertension, vol. 67, no. 3, pp. 597-605.

A specifically designed nanoconstruct associates, internalizes, traffics in cardiovascular cells, and accumulates in failing myocardium: A new strategy for heart failure diagnostics and therapeutics
Ruiz-Esparza, GU, Segura-Ibarra, V, Cordero-Reyes, AM, Youker, KA, Serda, RE, Cruz-Solbes, AS, Amione-Guerra, J, Yokoi, K, Kirui, DK, Cara, FE, Paez-Mayorga, J, Flores-Arredondo, JH, Guerrero-Beltrán, CE, Garcia-Rivas, G, Ferrari, M, Blanco, E & Torre-Amione, G 2016, , European Journal of Heart Failure, vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 169-178.

Full expression of cardiomyopathy is partly dependent on B-cells: A pathway that involves cytokine activation, immunoglobulin deposition, and activation of apoptosis
Cordero-Reyes, AM, Youker, KA, Trevino, AR, Celis, R, Hamilton, DJ, Flores-Arredondo, JH, Orrego, CM, Bhimaraj, A, Estep, JD & Torre-Amione, G 2016, , Journal of the American Heart Association, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 1-12.

Enhanced Cardiac Regenerative Ability of Stem Cells After Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury: Role of Human CD34(+) Cells Deficient in MicroRNA-377
Joladarashi, D, Srikanth Garikipati, VN, Thandavarayan, RA, Verma, SK, Mackie, AR, Khan, M, Gumpert, AM, Bhimaraj, A, Youker, KA, Uribe, C, Suresh Babu, S, Jeyabal, P, Kishore, R & Krishnamurthy, P 2015, , Journal of the American College of Cardiology, vol. 66, no. 20, pp. 2214-2226.