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Sally Wenzel M.D.

  • Professor, Department of Medicine
  • Director, Asthma Institute @UPMC
  • Subsection Chief of Allergy
  • UPMC Chair of Translational Airway Biology

    Education & Training

  • M.D., University of Florida
  • B.S., University of Florida
Representative Publications

Nagasaki T, Schuyler AJ, Zhao J, Samovich SN, Yamada K, Deng Y, Ginebaugh SP, Christenson SA, Woodruff PG, Fahy JV, Trudeau JB, Stoyanovsky D, Ray A, Tyurina YY, Kagan VE, Wenzel SE. 15LO1 dictates glutathione redox changes in asthmatic airway epithelium to worsen type 2 inflammation. J Clin Invest. 2022 Jan 4;132(1):e151685. doi: 10.1172/JCI151685. PMID: 34762602; PMCID: PMC8718153.

Zhao J, Dar HH, Deng Y, St Croix CM, Li Z, Minami Y, Shrivastava IH, Tyurina YY, Etling E, Rosenbaum JC, Nagasaki T, Trudeau JB, Watkins SC, Bahar I, Bayır H, VanDemark AP, Kagan VE, Wenzel SE. PEBP1 acts as a rheostat between prosurvival autophagy and ferroptotic death in asthmatic epithelial cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Jun 23;117(25):14376-14385. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1921618117. Epub 2020 Jun 8. PMID: 32513718; PMCID: PMC7321965.

Ray A, Camiolo M, Fitzpatrick A, Gauthier M, Wenzel SE. Are We Meeting the Promise of Endotypes and Precision Medicine in Asthma? Physiol Rev. 2020 Jul 1;100(3):983-1017. doi: 10.1152/physrev.00023.2019. Epub 2020 Jan 9. PMID: 31917651; PMCID: PMC7474260.

Camiolo MJ, Zhou X, Wei Q, Trejo Bittar HE, Kaminski N, Ray A, Wenzel SE. Machine learning implicates the IL-18 signaling axis in severe asthma. JCI Insight. 2021 Nov 8;6(21):e149945. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.149945. PMID: 34591794; PMCID: PMC8663569.

Zhou X, Kinlough CL, Hughey RP, Jin M, Inoue H, Etling E, Modena BD, Kaminski N, Bleecker ER, Meyers DA, Jarjour NN, Trudeau JB, Holguin F, Ray A, Wenzel SE. Sialylation of MUC4β N-glycans by ST6GAL1 orchestrates human airway epithelial cell differentiation associated with type-2 inflammation. JCI Insight. 2019 Mar 7;4(5):e122475. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.122475. PMID: 30730306; PMCID: PMC6483602.

Research Interests

Dr Wenzel does translational research in human asthma, targeted at understanding the biologic underpinnings of molecular phenotypes of asthma, and in particular the role of airway epithelial cells in contributing to those phenotypes. Dr. Wenzel is part of several asthma networks, including the largest ongoing severe asthma network in the world.  Her laboratory obtains human lung samples from a range of asthma patients and healthy controls to do targeted mechanistic studies of cell death pathways, in particular ferroptosis, a hydroperoxy-phospholipid mediated from of cell death, as well as the contribution of N-glycosylation to cell differentiation and survival.    Her laboratory is actively engaged in transcriptomics profiling of airway epithelial cells from well characterized patients and controls.   These studies are done in collaboration with Dr. Anuradha Ray, who  is specifically interested in immune cell responses.  Together we are working on the interactive networks which occur between these cell types/. Finally, Dr Wenzel oversees an asthma registry of patients here in Allegheny Cunty which enables studies of environmental impact on asthma of clear relevance in Pittsburgh.