The University of Iowa

Gary Pierce

Photo of Gary Pierce
Assistant Professor
Human Physiology
End Degree: 
Ph.D. (Exercise Physiology)
University of Florida
412 FH
Vascular Aging, Vascular Endothelial Function, Arterial Stiffness, Clinical Exercise Physiology, Clinical/Translational Research in Humans

Lab: 522 FH
Lab Website

Post-doctoral Fellowship 

University of Colorado at Boulder (Integrative Physiology)

Courses Taught

027:141/240 Exercise Physiology
027:150/250 Clinical Exercise Physiology
027:241 Integrative Physiology Seminar

Research Interests

The goal of my research is to determine the cellular and molecular mechanisms that contribute to vascular endothelial dysfunction and increased large elastic artery (e.g., aorta, carotid arteries) stiffness with aging, obesity and/or prediabetes in humans. We use an integrative experimental approach, including non-invasive and semi-invasive approaches to assess vascular function in human subjects and study cells/tissues (endothelial and mononuclear cells, sera, adipose) from humans to investigate the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved. A major focus is to translate basic science findings to clinically relevant treatments in humans by testing the efficacy of lifestyle, dietary and pharmacological interventions on cardiovascular structure and function in adults at high risk for developing cardiovascular disease. Lastly, we are also exploring the role of aortic stiffness and central pulsatile hemodynamics in mediating cardiovascular target organ damage in obese youth.

Recent Selected Publications

Pierce GL. Oral BH4: a novel remedy for age-related skin microvascular dysfunction during hyperthermia or fool’s elixir? J Appl Physiol 2013 Jul 11. [epub ahead of print]

Chalouhi N, Points L, Pierce GL, Ballas Z, Jabbour P, Hasan D. Localized increase of chemokines in the lumen of human cerebral aneurysms. Stroke 2013 Jul 25. [epub ahead of print]

Pierce GL, Casey DP, Fiedorowicz JG, Seals DR, Curry TB, Barnes JN, Wilson D, Stauss HM. Aortic pulse wave velocity and reflecting distance estimation from peripheral waveforms in humans: detection of age- and exercise training-related differences. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2013;305:H135-H142.

Pierce GL. Targeting vascular endothelial cell insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes mellitus: is protein kinase C Beta the bullseye for reducing vascular risk in diabetes? Circulation 2013,127:16-18.

Pierce GL, Zhu H, Darracott K, Edet I, Bhagatwala J, Huang Y, Dong Y. Arterial stiffness and pulse pressure amplification in overweight/obese african-american adolescents: relation with higher systolic and pulse pressure. Am J Hypertens 2013;26:20-26.

DeVan AE, Eskurza I, Pierce GL, Walker AE, Jablonksi KL, Kaplon RE, Seals DR. Regular aerobic exercise protects against impaired fasting glucose-associated vascular endothelial dysfunction with aging. Clin Sci (Lond) 2013;124:325-331.

Pierce GL, Jablonski KL, Walker AE, Seibert SM, Black SM, Shruti S, Seals DR. Tetrahydrobiopterin supplementation enhances carotid artery compliance in healthy older men: a pilot study. Am J Hypertens 2012; 25:1050-1054.

Pierce GL, Donato AJ, LaRocca TJ, Eskurza I, Silver AE, Seals DR. Habitually exercising older men do not demonstrate age-associated vascular endothelial oxidative stress. Aging Cell 2011;10:1032-1037.

Pierce GL, Eskurza I, Walker AE, Fay TN, Seals DR. Sex-specific effects of habitual aerobic exercise on brachial artery flow-mediated dilation in middle-aged and older adults. Clin Sci (Lond) 2011;120:13-23.