Deborah Lieu, Ph.D.

Deborah K. Lieu, Ph.D.


  • Assistant Professor


Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Lieu has over 10 years of research experience in human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes with over 22 peer-reviewed publications on the subject. Her research focuses on the mechanisms underlying the differentiation and maturation of human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSCs) into pacemaking cardiomyocytes for engineering biopacemakers and contractile cardiomyocytes for cell replacement therapy after heart attack.


Cardiovascular Medicine


Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, UC Davis, Davis CA 2002

B.S., UC Davis, Davis CA 1996

Honors and Awards

UC Davis Academic Federation Innovative Developmental Award, 2015

Shriners Hospital for Children Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2007

Select Recent Publications

Yechikov S, Copaciu R, Gluck JM, Deng W, Chiamvimonvat N, Chan JW, Lieu DK. Same-single-cell analysis of pacemaker-specific markers in human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocyte subtypes classified by electrophysiology. Stem Cells. 2016;34 (11): 2670-2680. Journal Cover: Images selected for November 2016, Volume 34, Issue 11 journal cover

Poon E, Keung W, Liang YM, Ramalingam R, Yan B, Zhang S, Chopra A, Moore J, Herren A, Lieu DK, Wong HS, Weng Z, Wong OT, Lam YW, Tomaselli GF, Chen C, Boheler KR, Li RA. Proteomic analysis of human pluripotent stem cell-derived, fetal and adult ventricular cardiomyocytes reveals pathways crucial for cardiac metabolism and maturation. Circ Cardiovasc Genet. 2015;8(3): 427-36.

Karakikes I, Senyei GD, Hansen J, Kong CW, Azeloglu EU, Stillitano F, Lieu DK, Wang J, Ren L, Hulot JS, Iyengar R, Li RA, Hajjar RJ. Small molecule-mediated directed differentiation of human embryonic stem cells toward ventricular cardiomyocytes. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2013;3(1): 18-31.

Wang J, Chen A, Lieu DK, Karakikes I, Chen G, Keung W, Chan CW, Hajjar RJ, Costa KD, Khine M, Li RA. Effect of engineered anisotropy on the susceptibility of human pluripotent stem cell-derived ventricular cardiomyocytes to arrhythmia. Biomaterials. 2013;34(35): 8878-86.

Lieu DK*, Fu J-D*, Chiamvimonvat N, Tung KC, McNerney GP, Huser T, Keller G, Kong C-W, Li RA. Mechanism-based facilitated maturation of human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. Circ Arrhythm Electrophysiol. 2013; 6(1): 191-201. (* co-first author)

Lieu DK*, Turnbull I, Costa KD, Li RA*. Engineered human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiac cells and tissues for electrophysiological studies. Drug Discov Today Dis Models. 2012;9(4): e209-217. (*co-corresponding author)

Awasthi S, Matthews DL, Li RA, Chiamvimonvat N, Lieu DK*, Chan JW*. Label-free identification and characterization of human pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes using second harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy. J Biophonton. 2012;5(1): 57-66. (*co-corresponding author)

Chen A, Lieu DK, Freschauf L, Lew V, Sharma H, Wang J, Nguyen D, Karakikes I, Hajjar RJ, Gopinathan A, Botvinick E, Fowlkes CC, Li RA, Khine M. Shrink-film configurable multiscale wrinkles for functional alignment of human embryonic stem cells and their cardiac derivatives. Adv Mat. 2011; 23(48): 5785-91.

Lieu DK*, Liu J, Siu CW, McNerney G, Tse HF, Huser T, Li R*. Absence of Transverse Tubules Contributes to Non-Uniform Ca2+ Wavefronts in Mouse and Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes. Stem Cells Dev. 2009;18(10): 1493-500. (*co-corresponding author)

Lieu DK*, Chan YC*, Lau CP, Tse HF, Li RA, Siu CW. Over-expression of HCN-encoded pacemaker current silences bioartificial pacemakers: An optimal level is required for inducing atrial automaticity. Heart Rhythms. 2008;5(9): 1310-7. (* co-first author) Commentary: Heart Rhythm 5(9): 1318-9.