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Yi Ren Ph.D.

Yi Ren Ph.D.

(850) 645-2013
Main Campus


Dr. Ren received her medical training in China and then undertook her Ph.D at Imperial College School of Medicine, London, UK. She joined Department of Biomedical Sciences, Florida State University College of Medicine in 2013.


Post-Doctoral training, University of Nottingham and Edinburgh
Ph.D., Imperial College School of Medicine, London, UK. Major: Cell Biology
MPhil, Chinese Disease Control, Major: Immunology and Virology
M.D., Guiyang Medical School, Major: Medicine


FSU Department Service
2013-2014. Faculty Search Committee

The Profession
Editorial Board Member
Neural Regeneration Research (2011-present)

Associate Editor
Macrophage (2014-present)

Reviewer or Panelist for Grant Applications
Rutgers Faculty Research Grants (2011)
Recruitment Program of Global Experts by Chinese central government (Thousand Talents Program) (2011)
The Key Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China (2008-2011)
The Chang Jiang Scholars Program (jointly implemented by the Ministry of Education and Li Ka Shing Foundation in China) (2009)

Ad-hoc Reviewer
Arthritis & Rheumatism, Bioinformatics, Brain Research, Cancer Biology & Therapy, Cancer Immunology Immunotherapy, Cancer Letter, Cell Biology and Toxicology, Journal of Bio-Techniques, Journal of Immunological Methods, Journal of Leukocyte Biology, Laboratory Investigation, Liver International, Proteomics and PPAR Research


2008. Merit award, Rutgers University
2008-2013. Joyce and Les Goodman Scholar
1995-1999. British Royal Society Research Fellowship


American Association of Immunologists
American Society for Neuroscience
American Association for Cancer Research
Association for the Study of Neurons and Diseases

Research Focus

Dr. Yi Ren directs a group interested in the molecular cell biology of inflammation, especially macrophage function in CNS trauma and tumor progression.


Rolfe AJ, Bosco DB, Wang JY, Nowakowski RS, Fan JQ and Ren Y. Bioinformatic Analysis Reveals the Expression of Unique Transcriptomic Signatures in Zika Virus Infected human Neural Stem Cells. Cell & Bioscience. 2016. 6:42. DOI 10.1186/s13578-016-0110-x.

Guo L, Rolfe AJ, Wang X, Tai W, Cheng Z, Cao K, Chen X, Xu Y, Sun D, Li J, He X, Young W, Fan J, Ren Y. Rescuing macrophage normal function in spinal cord injury with embryonic stem cell conditioned media. Mol. Brain. 2016. 9(1): 48.

Lai XH, Zhao LF, Chen XM and Ren Y. Rapid Identification and Characterization of Francisella by Molecular Biology and Other Techniques. Open Micob. J. 2016. 10:64-77.

Sun YBY, Qu XL, Howard V, Dai L, Jiang XY, Ren Y, Caruana G, Bertram JF, Sleeman M, Li J. Smad3 deficiency protects mice from obesity-induced podocyte injury which precedes insulin resistance. Kidney International. 2015. doi: 10.1038/ki.2015.121

Lai XH, Xu YS, Chen XM and Ren Y. Macrophage cell death upon intracellular bacterial infection. Macrophage. 2015. 2:e779.

Wang Xi, Cao K, Sun X, Chen YX, Duan ZX, Sun Li, Guo L, Bai P, Sun DM, Fan JQ, He XJ, Young W and Ren Y. Macrophages in spinal cord injury: phenotypic and functional change from exposure to myelin debris. Glia. 2015. 63: 635–651.

Yao XM, Chan ZL, Shen DL, Zhou QH, Huang SS, Cai ZR, Tang YL, Wang M, Ren Y, Lai XH, and Chen XM. Risk factors for pediatric intussusception complicated by loss of intestine viability in China from June 2009 to May 2014: a retrospective study. Ped. Surg. Int. 2014. DOI 10.1007/s00383-014-3653-0.

Zhou X, He XJ and Ren Y. Function of microglia and macrophages in secondary damage after spinal cord injury. Neural Regeneration Research. 2014. 9:1787-1795. Invited review.

Zhang J, Sun X, Zheng S, Liu X1 Jin J, Ren Y, Luo J. Myelin Basic Protein Induces Neuron-Specific Toxicity by Directly Damaging the Neuronal Plasma Membrane. Plos ONE. 2014. 9(9): e108646.

Chen TX, Wang Xi, Guo L, Wu MM, Duan ZX, Lv J, Tai WJ, Renganathan H, Didier R, Li JH, Sun DM, Chen XM, He XJ, Fan JQ, Young W and Ren Y. Embryonic stem cells promoting macrophage survival and function are crucial for teratoma development. Frontiers in Immunology. 2014. 5:1-16.

Qu X, Li Xl, Zheng YW, Ren Y, Puelles VG, Caruana G, Nikolic-Paterson D, and Li JH. Regulation of Renal Fibrosis by Smad3 Thr388 Phosphorylation. Am. J. Path. 2014. 184:944-952.

Zhang XJ, Chen LW, Wang YZ, Ding YX, Peng ZW, Duan L, Ju G, Ren Y and Wang X. Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor Promotes Proleferation and Neuronal Differentiation of Neural Stem/Precursor Cells through Wnt/ß-Catenin Signal Pathway. Int. J. Biol. Sci. 2013. 9:1108-1120.

Ren Y and Young W. Managing inflammation after spinal cord injury through manipulation of macrophage function. Neural Plasticity. 2013. Vol. 2013: Article ID 945034.

Wang X, Fan JQ, Lin, L, Cao K, Duan ZX, Chen TX, Zhang XJ, Shao CS, Tadmori I, Li TY, Sun DM, Zheng SS, Meinhardt A, Young W, Bucala R and Ren Y. MIF Produced by Bone Marrow-Derived Macrophages Contributes to Teratoma Progression after Embryonic Stem Cell Transplantation. Cancer Res. 2012. 71:2867-2878.

Ren Y. Peroxisome proliferator-activator receptor: a link between macrophage CD36 and inflammation in malaria infection. PPAR Res. 2012 Jan. Volume 2012:640769.

Zhu ZZ, Kremer P, Tadmori I, Ren Y, Sun DM, He XJ and Young W. Lithium Suppresses Astrogliogenesis by Neural Stem and Progenitor Cells by Inhibiting STAT3 Pathway Independently of Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3-b. PloS ONE. 2011. 6(9): e23341.

Shi LM, et al. The MicroArray Quality Control (MAQC)-II study of common practices for the development and validation of microarray-based predictive models. Nature Biotechnology. 2010. 28 (8): 827-838.

Sun X, Wang X, Chen TX, Li TY, Cao K, Lu A, Chen YX, Sun DM, Luo JH, Fan JQ, Young W and Ren Y. Myelin activates FAK/Akt/NF-?B pathways and provokes CR3-dependent inflammatory response. PLoS ONE. 2010. 5(2):e9380.

Li W, Xie Y, Sun R, Liu Q, Young J, Yu WY, Che CM, Tam P and Ren Y. Inhibition of Akt sensitizes neuroblastoma cells to gold(III) porphyrin 1a, a novel anti-tumor drug induced apoptosis and growth inhibition. British J. Cancer. 2009. 101:342-349.

Xie Y, Fan JQ, Chen JH, Huang FP, Cao B, Tam PKH and Ren Y. A novel function for dendritic cell: clearance of VEGF via VEGF receptor-1. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 2009. 380: 243-248.

Ren Y, Xie Y, Jiang GP, Fan JQ, Yeung J, Li W, Tam T and Savill J. Apoptotic cells protect mice against LPS-induced shock. J. Immunol. 2008. 180: 4978-4985.

Xie Y, Chan HM, Fan JQ, Chen YX, Young J, Li W, Miao XP, Yuan ZW, Wang HM, Tam P and Ren Y. Involvement of Visinin Like Protein-1 (VSNL-1) in Regulating Proliferative and Invasive Properties of Neuroblastoma. Carcinogenesis. 2007. 28(10):2122-30.

Fan JQ and Ren Y. Statistical Analysis of DNA Microarray Data in Cancer Research. Clin. Cancer Res. 2006. 12(15):4469-4473.

Ren Y, Chan HM, Fan JQ, Chen YX, Xie Y, Li W, Jiang GP, Liu Q, Meinhardt A and Tam P. Inhibition of Tumor Growth and Metastasis in vitro and in vivo by Targeting Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor in Human Neuroblastoma. Oncogene. 2006 Jun 15; 25(25):3501-8.

Fan JQ, Chen YX, Chan HM, Tam P and Ren Y. Removing intensity effects and identifying significant genes for Affymetrix arrays in MIF-suppressed neuroblastoma cells. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 2005 Dec. 102 (49):17751-17756.

Ren Y, Cao B, Law S, Xie Y, Lee PY, Cheung L, Chen YX, Huang X, Chan HM, Zhao P, Luk L, Vande Woude G and John Wong. Hepatocyte Growth Factor Promotes Cancer Cell Migration and Angiogenic Factors expression: A Prognostic Marker of Human Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinomas. Clin. Cancer Res. 2005.Sep. 11(17): 6190-6197.

Ren Y, Law S, Huang X, Lee PY, Li Z, Bacher M, Srivastava G and Wong J. Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor Stimulates Angiogenic Factors Expression, Correlates with Differentiation and Lymph Node Status in Patients with Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Ann. Surg. 2005. 242 (1): 55-63.

Fan JQ, Huang T, Peng H and Ren Y. Semilinear high-dimensional model for normalization of microarray data: a theoretical analysis and partial consistency. J Am Stat Asso. 2005. Sep. 808-813.

Ren Y, Lin CL, Li Z, Chen YX, Huang X, Lui V, Nicholls J, Lan HY and Tam P. Up-regulation of macrophage migration inhibitory factor in infants with acute neonatal necrotizing enterocolitis. Histopathology. 2005. 46(6):659-67.

He QY, Zhu R, Ren Y, Chiu JF and Tam P. Serological Protein Profiling of Neuroblastoma by ProteinChip SELDI-TOF Technology. J. Cell Biochem. 2005. 95(1):165-72.

Ren Y, He QY, Fan JQ, Jones B, Zhou Y, Xie Y, Cheung CY, Wu A, Chiu JF, Peiris JSM and Tam P. The Use of Proteomics in the Discovery of Serum Biomarkers from Patients with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Proteomics. 2004 Nov; 4(11):3477-84.

Fan JQ, Tam P, Vande Woude G and Ren Y. Normalization and significant analysis of cDNA microarrays using within-array replications applied to tumor cells response to MIF. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 2004. 101 (5): 1135-1140.

Ren Y, Chen HM, Li Z, Lin CL, Nicholls J, Chen ZF, Lee PY, Lui V, Bacher M and Tam P. Up-regulation of macrophage migration inhibitory factor contributes to induced N-Myc expression by activation of ERK signaling pathway and increased expression of interleukin-8 and VEGF in neuroblastoma. Oncogene. 2004 23(23):4146-54.

Ren Y, Poon RTP, Tsui HT, Li Z, Lau C, Yu WC and Fan ST. Interleukin-8 serum levels in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma: correlations with clinico-pathological features and prognosis. Clin. Cancer Res. 2003 Dec 9: 5996-6001.

Ren Y, Tang JL, MoK T, Chan AWK, Wu A and Lau CS. Increased apoptotic blood neutrophils and macrophages and decreased clearance of apoptotic neutrophils in systemic lupus erythematosus. Arthritis & rheumatism. 2003 Oct 48 (10): 2888-97.

Ren Y, Tsui HT, Poon RTP, Li Z, Chen YX, Lau C, Bacher M and Fan ST. Macrophage migration inhibitory factor: roles in regulating tumor cell migration and expression of angiogenic factors in hepatocellular carcinoma. Int. J. Cancer. 2003. 107; 22-29.

Lin CL,Lo WF, Lee TH, Ren Y, Hwang SL, Cheng YF, Chen CL, Chang YS, Lee SP, Rickinson AB, Tam P. Immunization with Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) peptide-pulsed dendritic cells induces functional CD8+ T cell immunity and can lead to tumor regression in patients with EBV-positive nasopharyngeal carcinoma. Cancer Res. 2002 Dec 1;62(23):6952-8.

Ren Y, Stuart L, Lindberg FP, Rosenkranz AR, Chen Y, Mayadas TN and Savill J. Nonphlogistic clearance of late apoptotic neutrophils by macrophages: efficient phagocytosis independent of ?2 intergrins. J. Immunol. 2001 April; 166: 4743-4750.

Harper L, Ren Y, Savill J, Adu D, Savage CO. Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies induce superoxide-dependent dyregulation of primed neutrophil apoptosis and clearance by macrophages. Am J. Path. 2000 July; 157(1): 211-220.

Zhuang JG, Ren Y, Snowden RT, Zhu H, Gogvadze V, Savill J, and Cohen GM. Dissociation of phagocyte recognition of cells undergoing apoptosis from other features of apoptotic program. J. Biol. Chem. 1998; 273(25): 1528 32.

Ren Y, Savill J. Apoptosis: The importance of being eaten. Cell Death. Differ.1998; 5(7): 563-8.

Navazo MDP, Daviet L, Savill J, Ren Y Leung LL, and McGregor JL. Identification of a domain (155-183) on CD36 implied in the phagocytosis of apoptotic neutrophils. J. Biol. Chem.1996; 271(26): 1538-85.

Ren Y, Silverstein RL, Allen J and Savill J. CD36 gene-transfer confers capacity for phagocytosis of cells undergoing apoptosis. J. Exp. Med. 1995; 181(5): 1857-62.

Ren Y, Savill J. Proinflammatory cytokines potentiate thrombospondin-mediated phagocytosis of neutrophils undergoing apoptosis. J. Immunol. 1995; 154(5): 2366-74.

Book Chapter:
Ren Y. The role of MIF on tumorigenicity of embryonic stem cells. In: The MIF Handbook. R. Bucala. Ed. World Sci. 305-318, 2012.