Nam Viet Vo, PhD

Dr. Nam Vo is tenured Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Deputy Vice Chair of Research in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, where he also holds joint appointments in the Departments of Pathology, McGowan Institute of Regenerative Medicine, Clinical and Translational Science Institute, and UPMC Aging Institute.

Dr. Vo received his Ph.D. degree with Dr. Michael Chamberlin in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 1998.  He completed his post-doctoral training with the Howard Hughes Investigator Dr. Michael Lai at the University of Southern California in 2003. He joined as faculty member of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh in 2006.

Dr. Vo is a highly dedicated mentor, having trained over 50 mentees, many of whom have gone on to have successful careers and won awards for their research.  He is well-funded by the NIH and other grant supports and has published over 100 peer reviewed publications, review articles, and book chapters.  He is currently a Co-Director of the Ferguson Laboratory for Spine Research which has diverse representation from experts in Orthopaedic Surgery, Physiatry, Physical Therapy performing highly inter-disciplinary spine research that span molecular and cell biology, histology, bioengineering, biomechanics, cell biology, biomarkers for spine degeneration and low back pain.  Dr. Vo has also been highly active in multi-disciplinary Orthopaedic societies, including serving as Chair of Education for the Orthopaedic Research Society Spine Section, Eastern US representative and Executive Fellowship Committee Member for the International Society for the Study of the Lumbar Spines.

Dr Vo’s research program aims at studying the biology of aging of the spine and its contribution to low back pain.  His research focus areas include: 1) interaction of autophagy and cellular senescence in spinal aging, 2) lactate metabolism and epigenetic regulation in spinal aging, 3) development of therapeutic interventions, including senolytics and gene therapy, for treating age-related spine degeneration and low back pain, and 4) Deep phenotyping of chronic low back pain through biomarker profiling.

View a list of Dr. Vo’s publications here.