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Hong Yu MD

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  • Associate Professor
  • College of Dental Medicine
  • Oral Health Sciences
Academic Focus
  • Bacterial infection and cytokine generation
  • Osteoclastogenesis and osteogenesis
  • Role of sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 2 in regulating immune responses in periodontitis
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Office Location


Hong Yu, M.D.

Research Associate Professor

Department of Oral Health Sciences



M.D., Beijing Medical University, Beijing, China

Postdoctoral training, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC)


Professional Experience

2011-2017: Research Assistant Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, MUSC

2011-2014: Director, Oral Preclinical Research Facility, Center for Oral Health Research, MUSC

2014-2017: Co-Director,Laboratory Core, Center for Oral Health Research, MUSC

2017-present: Research Associate Professor, Department of Oral Health Sciences, MUSC


Research Interests:

Dr. Hong Yu’s laboratory focuses on studying molecular signaling molecules that regulates immune response in periodontal disease. Periodontitis is a bacteria-induced inflammatory bone loss disease. Oral pathogens induce a proinflammatory response leading the generation of proinflammatory cytokines and sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P). These proinflammatory mediators promote chemotaxis of monocytes (osteoclast precursors) from blood circulation to bone tissues, where monocytes differentiate and fuse to form multinucleated osteoclasts, leading to bone loss. We determine how immune signaling molecules regulate the generation of proinflammatory cytokine and S1P, cell chemotaxis, osteoclastogenesis, and osteogenesis. Additionally, we develop new therapeutic strategies to inhibit the inflammatory bone loss response. 


Selected Recent Publications:

  •  Lin S, Pandruvada S, Yu H. Inhibition of Sphingosine-1-Phosphate Receptor 2 by JTE013 Promoted Osteogenesis by Increasing Vesicle Trafficking, Wnt/Ca2+, and BMP/Smad Singaling. Int J Mol Sci.2021 Nov 8;22(21). doi: 10.3390/ijms222112060. PubMed PMID: 34769490; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8584480. 
  •  Snipes M, Sun C, and Yu H. Inhibition of sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 2 attenuated ligature-induced periodontitis in mice. Oral Dis. 2020 Sep 18. doi: 10.1111/odi.13645. Online ahead of print.PMID: 32945579
  •  Hsu LC, Reddy SV, Yilmaz O, Yu H.Sphingosine-1-Phosphate Receptor 2 ControlsPodosomeComponents Induced by RANKL Affecting Osteoclastogenesis and Bone Resorption. Cells.2019 Jan 1;8(1).doi: 10.3390/cells8010017. PubMed PMID: 30609675; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6357083.
  •  Yu H.Sphingosine-1-Phosphate Receptor 2 Regulates Proinflammatory Cytokine Production and Osteoclastogenesis. PLoS One.2016 May 25;11(5):e0156303. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0156303. eCollection 2016. PubMed PMID: 27224249; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4880337.
  • Yu H, Sun C, Argraves KM. Periodontal inflammation and alveolar bone loss induced by Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitansis attenuated in sphingosine kinase 1-deficient mice.J Periodontal Res.2016 Feb;51(1):38-49.  doi: 10.1111/jre.12276. Epub 2015 Apr 20. PubMed PMID: 25900155; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4615256.
  • Yu H, Herbert BA, Valerio M, Yarborough L, Hsu LC, Argraves KM. FTY720 inhibited proinflammatory cytokine release and osteoclastogenesis induced by Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans. Lipids Health Dis.2015 Jul 4;14(1):66. 
  • Li Y, Lu Z, Zhang X, Yu H, Kirkwood KL, Lopes-Virella MF, Huang Y. Metabolic syndrome exacerbates inflammation and bone loss inperiodontitis. J Dent Res.2015 Feb;94(2):362-70. doi: 10.1177/0022034514561658. Epub 2014 Dec 11. PubMed PMID: 25503900; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4300302.
  • Valerio MS, Herbert BA, Basilakos DS, Browne C, Yu H, Kirkwood KL.  Critical role of MKP-1 in lipopolysaccharide-induced osteoclast formation through CXCL1 and CXCL2. Cytokine.2014 Sep 24;71(1):71-80.doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2014.08.007. Epub 2014 Sep 27. PubMed PMID: 25261746; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4254057.
  • Jin J, Zhang X, Lu Z, Li Y, Lopes-Virella MF, Yu H, Haycraft CJ, Kirkwood KL, Huang Y. Simvastatin inhibits lipopolysaccharide-induced osteoclastogenesis and reduces alveolar bone loss in experimental periodontal disease. J Periodontal Res.2014 Aug;49(4):518-26.doi: 10.1111/jre.12132. Epub 2013 Oct 7. PubMed PMID: 24117880; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3979522.
  • Jin J, Machado ER,Yu H, Zhang X, Lu Z, Li Y, Lopes-Virella MF, Kirkwood KL, Huang Y. Simvastatin inhibits LPS-induced alveolar bone loss during metabolic syndrome. J Dent Res.2014 Mar;93(3):294-9. doi: 10.1177/0022034513516980. Epub 2013 Dec 18. PubMed PMID: 24352501; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3929976.
  • Yu H, Valerio M, Bielawski J. Fenretinide inhibited de novo ceramide synthesis and pro-inflammatory cytokines induced by A. actinomycetemcomitansJ Lipid Res.2013 Jan;54(1):189-201. doi: 10.1194/jlr.M031427. Epub 2012 Nov 8. PubMed PMID: 23139430; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3520524.
  • Dunmyer J, Herbert B, Li Q, Zinna R, Martin K, Yu H, Kirkwood KL. Sustained mitogen-activated protein kinase activation with Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans causes inflammatory bone loss. Mol Oral Microbiol.2012 Oct;27(5):397-407. Epub 2012 Jul 11. doi: 10.1111/j.2041-1014.2012.00656.x. Epub 2012 Jul 11. PubMed PMID: 22958388; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3442952.
  • McAbee J, Li Q, Yu H, Kirkwood KL. Sexual dimorphism in periapical inflammation and bone loss from mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphatase-1 deficient mice. J Endod.2012 Aug;38(8):1097-100. doi: 10.1016/j.joen.2012.04.016. Epub 2012 Jun 8. PubMed PMID: 22794213; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3399764.
  • Ge C, Yang Q, Zhao G, Yu H, Kirkwood KL, Franceschi RT. Interactions between extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and P38 map kinase pathways in the control of RUNX2 phosphorylation and transcriptional activity. J Bone Miner Res.2012 Mar;27(3):538-51. doi: 10.1002/jbmr.561. PubMed PMID: 22072425; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4285380.
  • Yu H, Sun Y, Haycraft C, Palanisamy V, Kirkwood KL. MKP-1 regulates cytokine mRNA stability through selectively modulation subcellular translocation of AUF1. Cytokine.2011 Nov;56(2):245-55. doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2011.06.006. Epub 2011 Jul 5. PubMed PMID: 21733716; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3185122.
  • Trombetta-Esilva J, Yu H, Arias DN, Rossa C Jr, Kirkwood KL, Bradshaw AD.LPS Induces greater bone and PDL Loss in SPARC-null mice. J Dent Res.2011 Apr;90(4):477-82. doi: 10.1177/0022034510391800. Epub 2010 Dec 29. PubMed PMID: 21191126; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3144132.
  • Li Q, Yu H, Zinna RA, Martin K, Herbert B, Liu A, Rossa C, Kirkwood KL.Silencing MAP Kinase-activated Protein Kinase-2 Arrests Inflammatory Bone Loss. J Pharmacol Exp Ther.2011 Mar;336(3):633-42. doi: 10.1124/jpet.110.172395. Epub 2010 Dec 7. PubMed PMID: 21139061; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3061533.
  • Yu H, Li Q, Herbert B, Zinna R, Martin K, Junior CR, Kirkwood KL. Anti-inflammatory effect of MAPK phosphatase-1 local gene transfer in inflammatory bone loss.Gene Ther.2011 Apr;18(4):344-53. doi: 10.1038/gt.2010.139. Epub 2010 Nov 11. PubMed PMID: 21068780; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3086452