Wei Yao, Ph.D.

Wei Yao, Ph.D.


Metabolic Bone Disease

Musculoskeletal Disorders


  • Professor


Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Yao's key research interests include:

1. Discovery of bone-targeted, regenerative therapy for musculoskeletal disorders.

2. Define the role of progesterone receptor in regulating sex dimorphism of peak bone mass, osteoarthritis and inflammatory arthritis.

3. Chronic glucocorticoid or other bone active agents on bone quality and quantity. 


General Medicine


M.D., Xianya Medical University, ChangSha, China 1992

Bone Biology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City UT 1997-2000

Ph.D., Internal Medicine, XianYa Medical University, ChangSha, China 1996

Internship: Internal Medicine, XianYa Medical University, ChangSha, China


Internal Medicine, Beihai, Baihai, China

Professional Memberships

American Society for Bone and Mineral Research

International Chinese Musculoskeletal Research Society

Orthopaedic Research Society

Honors and Awards

Dean�s Team Award, Excellency in Research, UC Davis, School of Medicine, 2013

UC Davis Academic Federal Excellency in Research Award, 2012

Mentor Award, Internal Medicine, UC Davis Medical Center, 2011

Alice Jee Travel Award to Sun Valley Hard Tissue Workshop, 1997, 1998,

American Society of Bone and Mineral Research Young Investigator Award, 2003,

Betterment of mankind award, The Pauchon Research Foundation, C2016,

Select Recent Publications

Guan M, Yao W (co-first author, corresponding author), Liu R, Lam KS, Nolta J, Jia J, Panganiban B, Meng L, Zhou P, Shahnazari M, Ritchie RO, and Lane NE. (2012) Directing mesenchymal stem cells to bone to augment bone formation and increase bone mass. Nature medicine 18, 456-462. PMCID: PMC3755884

Yao W (corresponding author), Guan M, Jia J, Dai W, Lay YA, Amugongo S, Liu R, Olivos D, Saunders M, Lam KS, Nolta J, Olvera D, Ritchie RO, and Lane NE. (2013) Reversing bone loss by directing mesenchymal stem cells to bone. Stem cells 31, 2003-2014. PMCID: PMC3795809

Yao W (corresponding author), Lay YE, Kot A, Liu RW, Xhang HL, Chen HY, Lam KS, and Lane NE. (2016) Improved mobilization of exogenous mesenchymal stem cells to the bone for fracture healing and sex difference. Stem cells 34:2587-2600. PMCID: PMC5690802

Zhang HL, Kot A, Lay YE, Fierro F, Chen HY, Lane NE, and Yao W. (2017)  Acceleration of fracture healing by overexpression of basic fibroblast growth factor in the mesenchymal stromal cells. Stem Cells Trans Med 6 (10):1880-1893. PMID: 28792122 DOI:10.1002/sctm.17-0039

Yao, W., Dai, W., Shahnazari, M., Pham, A., Chen, Z., Chen, H., Guan, M., and Lane, N. E. (2010) Inhibition of the progesterone nuclear receptor during the bone linear growth phase increases peak bone mass in female mice. PloS one 5, e11410. PMCID: PMC2895664

Zhong Z. A., Kot A,, Zhang H.L., Lay Y.E., Chen H.Y., Lane N E, and Yao W*.  (2017) Sex-dependent, osteoblast stage-specific effects of progesterone receptor on bone acquisition. JBMR 32 (9): 1841-1852. PMCID: PMC5611815

Kot A, Zhong, ZA, Zhang HL, Lay YE, Lane N E, and Yao W*. (2017) Sexual dimorphic regulations of progesterone receptor in bone stromal cells.  J Mol. Endo 59(4):351-363.  PMCID: PMC5633481

Yao W, Cheng Z, Busse C, Pham A, Nakamura MC, and Lane NE. (2008) Glucocorticoid excess in mice results in early activation of osteoclastogenesis and adipogenesis and prolonged suppression of osteogenesis: a longitudinal study of gene expression in bone tissue from glucocorticoid-treated mice. Arthritis and rheumatism 58, 1674-1686. PMCID: PMC3892702

Yao W, Dai W, Jiang JX, and Lane NE. (2013) Glucocorticoids and osteocyte autophagy. Bone 54, 279-284. PMCID: PMC3784314

Yao W, Dai W, Jiang L, Lay EY, Zhong Z, Ritchie RO, Li X, Ke H, and Lane NE. (2016) Sclerostin-antibody treatment of glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis maintained bone mass and strength. 27, 283-294. PMCID: PMC4958115