Vagnozzi Lab

Our lab studies the cellular mechanisms of injury and stress responses in the heart. We are particularly interested in the innate immune system and how inflammation impacts wound healing, fibrosis, and tissue remodeling in beneficial as well as adverse ways. We use the mouse as our primary model, which allows us to interrogate gene functions and signaling pathways, perform genetic lineage tracing, and mimic complex cardiovascular pathology in a mammalian system. Our goal is to understand the regulatory mechanisms of cardiac wound healing and discover novel approaches to repair or even rejuvenate the damaged heart. Our approach, first and foremost, is driven by a shared lab culture of teamwork, discovery, and high-quality science.

Ronald J. Vagnozzi, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Gates Center for Regenerative Medicine
Consortium for Fibrosis Research Translation (CFReT)

Functions of tissue macrophage subsets in cardiac health and disease

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Signaling pathways regulating damage sensing and inflammation                              

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Crosstalk between immune cells, fibroblasts, and the extracellular matrix

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Genetic lineage tracing and genome-wide screening as discovery platforms

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Ronald J. Vagnozzi, Ph.D.


Assistant Professor
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Gates Center for Regenerative Medicine
Consortium for Fibrosis Research Translation (CFReT)


Ilaria Ferrari, B.S.

Ferrari Photo

Ilaria moved to Colorado in 2018 from New York City after receiving a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Columbia University. Since then, she conducted clinical research for the Emergency Department of Children's Hospital Colorado while completing her premedical coursework, and she is now excited to bring both engineering and clinical perspectives to the lab.


Doron Regev M.S. rLATG 


Doron moved to Colorado from Boston, MA with his wife and two daughters in June 2021. Doron received his BS in Biology from the University at Albany and a master's degree in Molecular Genetics and Microbiology from the University of Florida. He then spent 4.5 years in the Interdisciplinary PhD Program there, studying Immunology and Virology. Doron then worked as a Senior Associate Scientist at Biogen (Cambridge, MA) with a focus on in vivo study support and as an animal facility Manager at Harvard Medical School. Doron is excited to be back in the research setting and to contribute to the lab and department alike. 


Joseph Adjei












Joseph is a summer intern from the Gates Center for Regenerative Medicine Summer Internship Program (GSIP). He is an international student studying Biomedical Science and minoring in Chemistry and Psychology at Rochester Institute of Technology, RIT. Joseph is an undergraduate researcher in the Hudson Lab at RIT and he has two years of research experience under his belt, hoping to bring his experience to the lab.


Mechanisms and strategies for a therapeutic cardiac immune response. J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2021 May 26:S0022-2828(21)00107-3. doi: 10.1016/j.yjmcc.2021.05.013. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34051237.


SupErbB monocytes? Innate immune cells help the heart adapt. J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2020 Dec 11;152:92-94. doi: 10.1016/j.yjmcc.2020.12.003.

Resident macrophages keep mitochondria running in the heart. Cell Res. 2020 Dec;30(12):1057-1058. doi: 10.1038/s41422-020-00427-z.

Cardiac Cell Therapy Rejuvenates the Infarcted Rodent Heart via Direct Injection but Not by Vascular Infusion. Circulation. 2020 Mar 24;141(12):1037-1039. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.119.044686.

An acute immune response underlies the benefit of cardiac stem cell therapy. Nature. 2020 Jan;577(7790):405-409. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1802-2.



Basic Cardiovascular Sciences Scientific Sessions 2019: Integrative Approaches to Complex Cardiovascular Diseases. Circ Res. 2019 Oct 25;125(10):924-931. doi: 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.119.315977.

CARdiac Immunotherapy: T Cells Engineered to Treat the Fibrotic Heart. Mol Ther. 2019 Nov 6;27(11):1869-1871. doi: 10.1016/j.ymthe.2019.09.021.



Genetic Lineage Tracing of Sca-1+ Cells Reveals Endothelial but Not Myogenic Contribution to the Murine Heart. Circulation. 2018 Dec 18;138(25):2931-2939. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.118.035210.

New Myocyte Formation in the Adult Heart: Endogenous Sources and Therapeutic Implications. Circ. Res. 2018 Jul 6;123(2):159-176. doi: 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.118.311208.