Oh Sung Kwon

Assistant Professor


Lab: www.kwon.lab.uconn.edu



Research Associate, Utah Vascular Research Laboratory, University of Utah, 2016-2018

Postdoctoral Fellow, Internal Medicine, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, 2015-2016

Postdoctoral Fellow, Physical Therapy, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, 2014-2015

Ph.D.    Exercise Physiology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, 2013

M.S.     Exercise Physiology, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC, 2009

M.S.     Exercise Physiology, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea, 2002

B.S.       Physical Education, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea, 2000


Areas of Expertise:

Mitochondria, Bioenergetics, Musculoskeletal Physiology, Cardiovascular Physiology

Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in skeletal muscle disease (atrophy and diabetes) and endothelial dysfunction with advancing age and cardiovascular disease



Dr. Kwon is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Kwon completed his undergraduate and master degrees at Seoul National University in Seoul, South Korea. He completed a master’s degree at the East Carolina University under the direction of Dr. Darrell Neufer and doctoral degree at the University of Florida under the direction of Dr. Scott K. Powers. After completing his doctoral program, Dr. Kwon worked with Dr. Micah Drummond and then joined Dr. Russell Richardson’s Utah Vascular Research Laboratory as a postdoctoral fellow. Through extensive educational and laboratory experiences, his research topics range from the study of cells and rodents to human and from basic science and molecular science to clinical science in the skeletal muscle and vascular physiology. Utilizing an integrative approach that combines invivo and invitro techniques, Dr. Kwon’s research focuses on examining the impact of oxidative stress and mitochondria dysfunction on skeletal muscle and vasculatures with advancing age and skeletal muscle and cardiovascular diseases.


Research Statement:

Dr. Kwon’s current research interests include an integrative approach to the study of vascular and skeletal muscle function in both animal and human models. Specifically, he is interested in identifying the role of oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction on skeletal muscle and vasculatures with aging and age-related diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart failure, and hypertension. To undertake mechanistic studies, his lab employs a wide array of techniques (Permeablized mitochondrial respiration, Isolated vessel pressure myography, Electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, Ultrasound doppler, and a host of molecular and cellular biology techniques) with the goal of achieving an integrative view of muscle, vascular, and pathophysiology.


Selected Publications in the last 5 years:

Kwon OS†, Andtbacka RHI, Hyngstrom JR, and Richardson RS. Vasodilatory function in human skeletal muscle feed arteries with advancing age: The role of adropin. (†Corresponding Author) Journal of Physiology. In press.

Park SH*, Kwon OS*, Park SY, Weavil JC, Andtbacka RHI, Hyngstrom JR, Reese VR, and Richardson RS. Vascular mitochondrial respiratory function: the impact of advancing age. (*Co-first author) American Journal of  Physiology Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 Sep 7.

Berg OK, Kwon OS, Hureau T, Cliffton H, Thurston T, Fur YL, Jeong EK, Trinity JD, Wang E, and Layec G. Maximal strength training increases muscle force generating capacity and the anaerobic ATP synthesis flux without altering the cost of contraction in elderly. Experimental Gerontology. 2018 Oct 1;111:154-161.

Hart CR, Layec G, Trinity JD, Kwon OS, Zhao J, Reese VR, Gifford JR and Richardson RS. Increased skeletal muscle mitochondrial free radical production in peripheral arterial disease despite preserved mitochondrial respiratory capacity. Experimental Physiology. 2018 Jun; 103(6):838-850

Gifford JR, Trinity JD, Kwon OS, Layec G, Garten RS, Park SY, Nelson AD, and Richardson RS. Altered skeletal muscle mitochondrial phenotype in COPD: Disease versus disuse. Journal of Applied Physiology. 2018 Apr 1;124(4):1045-1053

Park SY*, Kwon OS*†, Andtbacka RHI, Hyngstrom JR, Reese V, and Richardson RS. Age-related endothelial dysfunction in human skeletal muscle feed arteries: the role of free radicals derived from mitochondria in the vasculature. (*Co-first author and †corresponding author) Acta Physiologica. 2018 Jan 1; 222(1):1-12 [PMID: 28493603]

Broxterman RM, Trinity JD, Gifford JR, Kwon OS, Kithas AC, Hydren JR, Nelson AD, Morgan DE, Jessop J, Bledsoe A, and Richardson RS. Single passive leg movement assessment of vascular function: The contribution of nitric oxide. Journal of Applied Physiology. 2017 Dec 1; 123:1468-1476

Ives SJ, Park SY, Kwon OS, Gifford JR, Hyngstrom JR, Andtbacka RH and Richardson RS. TRPV1 channels in human skeletal muscle feed arteries: implications for vascular function. Experimental Physiology. 2017 Sep 1; 102(9):1245-1258

Layec G, Hart CR, Trinity JD, Kwon OS, Rossman MJ, Broxterman RM, Le Fur Y, Jeong EK and Richardson RS. Oxygen delivery and the restoration of the muscle energetic balance following exercise: Implications for delayed muscle recovery in patients with COPD. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2017 July 1; 313(1):E94-104

McKenzie AI, Briggs RA, Borrows KM, Nelson DS, Kwon OS, Higgins TF, Marcus RL and Drummond MJ. A pilot study examining the impact of exercise training on skeletal muscle genes related to the TLR signaling pathway in older adults following hip fracture. Journal of Applied Physiology. 2017 Jan 1;122(1):68-75

Kwon OS, Nelson D, Borrows K, O’Connell RM and Drummond MJ. Intramyocellular ceramides and skeletal muscle mitochondrial respiration are partially regulated by toll-like receptor 4 during hindlimb unloading. Am J Physiol Regul. Integr. and Comp. 2016 Nov 1;311(5):R879-R887.

Talbert EE, Smuder AJ, Kwon OS, Sollanek KJ, Wiggs MP and Powers SK. Blockage of the ryanodine receptor via azumolene does not prevent mechanical ventilation-induced diaphragm atrophy. PLoS One. 2016 Feb5;11(2): e0148161

Smuder AJ, Gonzalez-Rothi EJ, Kwon OS, Morton AB, Sollanek KJ, Powers SK, Fuller DD. Cervical spinal cord injury exacerbates ventilator-induced diaphragm dysfunction. Journal of Applied Physiology. 2016 Jan 15;120(2):166-77.

Park SY, Son WM, Kwon OS. Effects of whole body vibration training on body composition, skeletal muscle strength, and cardiovascular health. Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation. 2015 Dec 31; 11(6):289-295

Kwon OS, Smuder AJ, Talbert EE, Wiggs MP, Hall SE, Sollanek KJ, Morton A, Toklu HZ, Tumer N, Powers SK. AT1 receptor blocker losartan protects against mechanical ventilation-induced diaphragmatic dysfunction. Journal of Applied Physiology. 2015 Nov 15;119(10):1033-41.

Tanner RE, Brunker LB, Agergaard J, Barrows K, Briggs RA, Kwon OS, Young LM, Hopkins PN, Volpi E, Marcus RL, LaStayo PC, Drummond MJ. Age-related differences in lean mass, protein synthesis and skeletal muscle markers of proteolysis after bed rest and exercise rehabilitation. Journal of Physiology. 2015 Sept;593(18): 4259-73.

Kwon OS, Tanner RE, Barrows K, Runtsch M, Symons JD, Jalili T, Bikman BT, McClain DA, O’Connell RM, and Drummond MJ. MyD88 regulates physical inactivity-induced skeletal muscle inflammation, ceramide biosynthesis signaling and glucose intolerance. American Journal of Physiology Endocrinol Metab, 2015 Jul 1;309(1): E11-21.

Min K, Kwon OS, Smuder AJ, Wiggs MP, Sollanek KJ, Christou DD, Yoo JK, Hwang MH, Szeto HH, Kavazis A and Powers SK. Increased mitochondrial emission of reactive oxygen species and calpain activation are required for doxorubicin-induced cardiac and skeletal muscle myopathy. Journal of Physiology. 2015 Apr 15;593(8):2017-36.

Smith IJ, Godinez GL, Singh BK, McCaughey KM, Alcantara RR, Gururaja T, Ho MS, Nguyen HN, Friera AM, White KA, McLaughlin JR, Hansen D, Romero JM, Baltgalvis KA, Claypool MD, Li W, Lang W, Yam GC, Gelman MS, Ding R, Yung SL, Creger DP, Chen Y, Singh R, Smuder AJ, Wiggs MP, Kwon OS, Sollanek KJ, Powers SK, Masuda ES, Taylor VC, Payan DG, Kinoshita T, Kinsella TM. Inhibition of Janus kinase signaling during controlled mechanical ventilation prevents ventilation-induced diaphragm dysfunction. FASEB J. 2014 July;28(7): 2790-803.

Toklu HZ, Kwon OS, Sakarya Y, Powers SK, Llinas K, Kirichenko N, Solanek KJ, Wiggs MP, Smuder AJ, Talbert EE, Scarpace PJ, Tumer N. The effects of enalapril and losartan on mechanical ventilation induced sympathoadrenal activation and oxidative stress. Journal of Surgical Research. 2014 May 15;188(2):510-6.



The best presentation, Korean Physiological Society, Korea (2015)

Norma Leavitt endowed scholarship Dept. of Applied Physiology and kinesiology, University of Florida (2009)

Grinter scholarship Dept. of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology, University of Florida (2009)

Seoul National University, Department of Physical Education, Outstanding Exercise Science Student Scholarship Recipient (2000-2002)

Korea National Track and Field Competition, 1st place winner (400M Relay) (1995)

Middle and High School Track and Field Competition, 1st place winner (200M) and 3rd place winner (100M) (1993)

Nike Outstanding Athlete of the year in South Korea – Track and Field (1992)


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