Ramaswamy Kannappan

Assistant Professor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Volker G094S
(205) 996-0826

Research and Teaching Interests: Cardiovascular and stem cell biology, Cardiac tissue engineering, Molecular and biochemical regulation of cardiac regeneration and function

Office Hours: By appointment


  • B. Pharm., The Tamil Nadu Dr. M.G.R. Medical University, India
  • M. Pharm., The Tamil Nadu Dr. M.G.R. Medical University, India
  • Ph.D., The Niigata University of Pharmacy and Applied Life Sciences, Japan

Ramaswamy Kannappan, M. pharm., Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering joined in December 2015. He received his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the Niigata University of Pharmacy and Applied Life Sciences, Japan. He then did his postdoctoral training in Brigham and Women's Hospital before joining as a faculty. His current research focuses on regenerating the injured heart using cardiac cells derived from induced pluripotent stem cells.

Research Interests

Dr. Kannappan’s primary interest is in studying the role of the transcription factor p53 in regulating the fate of stem cells and stem cell-derived cardiac cells. Improving the quality, not the quantity of the stem cells is the key to cell therapy. His group has demonstrated a small molecule-based selection of DNA damage-free cells. These newly generated cells showed superior properties, such as cell engraftment and cardiac functional improvements in ischemic hearts. Recently, the research focus is on studying the molecular mechanisms of cell engraftment and cardiac cell maturation. His other research interests include cell-based therapy for cardiac fibrosis, identifying novel signaling pathways linking cell engraftment and immune cells.

Recent Courses

BME 490/590: Current Topics in Stem Cell Engineering.

Select Publications

Select Publications:

  • LaBarge W, Morales A, Pretorius D, Kahn-Krell AM, Kannappan R, Zhang J. Scaffold-Free Bioprinter Utilizing Layer-By-Layer Printing of Cellular Spheroids. Micromachines (Basel). 2019 Aug 29;10(9).
  • Kannappan R, Turner JF, Miller JM, Fan C, Rushdi AG, Rajasekaran NS, Zhang J. Functionally Competent DNA Damage-Free Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes for Myocardial Repair. Circulation. 2019 Aug 6;140(6):520-522.
  • LaBarge W, Mattappally S, Kannappan R, Fast VG, Pretorius D, Berry JL, Zhang J. Maturation of three-dimensional, hiPSC-derived cardiomyocyte spheroids utilizing cyclic, uniaxial stretch and electrical stimulation. PLoS One. 2019 Jul 5;14(7):e0219442.
  • Rogers AJ, Miller JM, Kannappan R, Sethu P. Cardiac Tissue Chips (CTCs) for Modelling Cardiovascular Disease. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2019 Mar 18.
  • Rogers AJ, Kannappan R, Abukhalifeh H, Ghazal M, Miller JM, El-Baz A, Fast VG, Sethu P. Hemodynamic Stimulation Using the Biomimetic Cardiac Tissue Model (BCTM) Enhances Maturation of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes. Cells Tissues Organs. 2018;206(1-2):82-94.
  • Miller JM, Mardhekar NM, Rajasekaran V, Zhang J, Kannappan R. Assessing Stem Cell DNA Integrity for Cardiac Cell Therapy. J Vis Exp. 2019 Jan 25;(143).
  • Kannappan R, Mattapally S, Wagle PA, Zhang J. Transactivation domain of p53 regulates DNA repair and integrity in human iPS cells. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 Sep 1;315(3):H512-H521.
  • Mattapally S, Zhu W, Fast VG, Gao L, Worley C, Kannappan R, Borovjagin AV, Zhang J. Spheroids of cardiomyocytes derived from human-induced pluripotent stem cells improve recovery from myocardial injury in mice. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 Aug 1;315(2):H327-H339.
  • Palanisamy A, Kannappan R, Xu Z, Martino A, Friese MB, Boyd JD, Crosby G, Culley DJ. Oxytocin alters cell fate selection of rat neural progenitor cells in vitro. PLoS One. 2018 Jan 18;13(1):e0191160.
  • Czarna A, Sanada F, Matsuda A, Kim J, Signore S, Pereira JD, Sorrentino A, Kannappan R, Cannatà A, Hosoda T, Rota M, Crea F, Anversa P, Leri A. Single-cell analysis of the fate of c-kit-positive bone marrow cells. NPJ Regen Med. 2017 Oct 16;2:27.
  • Gao L, Gregorich ZR, Zhu W, Mattapally S, Oduk Y, Lou X, Kannappan R, Borovjagin AV, Walcott GP, Pollard AE, Fast VG, Hu X, Lloyd SG, Ge Y, Zhang J. Large Cardiac Muscle Patches Engineered From Human Induced-Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiac Cells Improve Recovery From Myocardial Infarction in Swine. Circulation. 2018 Apr 17;137(16):1712-1730.
  • Oduk Y, Zhu W, Kannappan R, Zhao M, Borovjagin AV, Oparil S, Zhang JJ. VEGF nanoparticles repair the heart after myocardial infarction. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 Feb 1;314(2):H278-H284.
  • Kannappan R, Matsuda A, Ferreira-Martins J, Zhang E, Palano G, Czarna A, Cabral-Da-Silva MC, Bastos-Carvalho A, Sanada F, Ide N, Rota M, Blasco MA, Serrano M, Anversa P, Leri A. p53 Modulates the Fate of Cardiac Progenitor Cells Ex Vivo and in the Diabetic Heart In Vivo. EBioMedicine. 2017 Feb;16:224-237.
  • Kannappan R, Zhang J. Meeting Report for NIH 2016 Progenitor Cell Biology Consortium Cardiovascular Tissue Engineering 2016. Circ Res. 2016 Oct 14;119(9):981-983.

View All Publications

Academic Distinctions and Professional Societies

  • Professional member, American Heart Association
  • Research award-review panels, American Heart Association
  • Scientific reviewer, several international journals in the fields of stem cell biology and cardiovascular sciences.