John C. Chappell


Office phone: 540-526-2219

Office location: R2119

Email address:

John C. Chappell, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC

Assistant Professor, Department of Basic Science Education, School of Medicine

Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, College of Engineering

Blood vessels deliver oxygen and distribute inflammatory cells to nearly every tissue in the human body, among other essential functions. Regulation of vascular growth must therefore be tightly controlled, and when this regulation is disrupted, numerous diseases can occur or become worsened such as cancer growth and metastasis. John Chappell and his research team study how the blood vasculature develops during early organ formation and during certain diseases such as tumor progression and neurological disorders. Increased insight into the basic mechanisms of blood vessel formation will guide the design of clinical therapies for vascular-related pathologies.

Pericytes are cells that wrap around blood vessels to maintain their stability and integrity. Disruptions in pericyte contribution to the vascular wall can lead to disease progression including diabetic retinopathy. Trained as a biomedical engineer, Chappell uses computational modeling approaches in conjunction with real-time imaging of ex vivo and in vitro models of blood vessel formation to understand pericyte behavior during blood vessel formation in health and disease. Understanding the mechanisms behind pericyte recruitment and investment will provide rationale and guidance for targeting pericyte-endothelial cell interactions for therapeutic benefit.

For a more complete listing of John Chappell's publications, visit PubMed.

Education and Training

  • University of Virginia: PhD , Biomedical Engineering
  • University of Virginia: MS , Biomedical Engineering
  • University of Virginia: BS , Electrical Engineering

Previous Positions

  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    Postdoctoral Research Associate, Program in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology Laboratory

Awards and Honors

  • Outstanding Trainee Oral Presentation, UNC IVB/MHI Research Symposium, 2011
  • Joseph S. Pagano Award for Best Paper by a Postdoctoral Fellow for 2009, First Place, 2010
  • Keystone Symposia Conference on Angiogenesis in Health and Disease, Travel Scholarship, 2010
  • Gordon Research Conference on Angiogenesis, Poster Presentation Award, 2009
  • University of Virginia Engineering Research Symposium, First Place, 2007

Selected Publications

Chappell JC, Mouillesseaux KP, Bautch VL. (2013). Flt-1 (VEGFR-1) is Essential for the VEGF-Notch Feedback Loop during Angiogenesis. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology 33(8).

Chappell JC, Wiley DM, Bautch VL. (2012). How blood vessel networks are made and measured. Cells Tissues and Organs 195(1).

Hashambhoy YK, Chappell JC, Peirce SM, Bautch VL, Gabhann FM. (2011). Computational modeling of interacting VEGF and soluble VEGF receptor concentration gradients. Frontiers in Physiology 2(62).