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Dr Yung-Chih (Ben) Chen

MBB | VMD | PhD (Monash University)

Dr Yung-Chih (Ben) Chen

Group Leader: Atherothrombosis and Vascular Biology


Deakin University supervisor

La Trobe University supervisor

University of Melbourne supervisor

Monash University supervisor

RMIT University supervisor

Torrens University supervisor

Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow and Baker Fellow

+61 3 8532 1468

My scientific focus is on unstable plaques and plaque rupture thrombosis, and I am a veterinarian. What I discovered that blood shear stress causes plaque vulnerability, we designed a mouse model to simulate plaque rupture using a shear stress modifier (known as tandem stenosis). Plaque rupture was caused by low shear stress and high tensile stress in a specific vessel section. The model attracted national and international recognition rapidly. The second animal model, diabetic tandem stenosis, was subsequently introduced. The model reflects plaque instability in the setting of diabetes.

Diabetes enhanced plaque instability, resulting in intraplaque haemorrhage and plaque rupture. Treatment of atherosclerotic plaques with sodium glucose co-transporter 2 inhibitors (SGLT2i) yielded promising results: SGLT2i treatment significantly reduced plaque lipid content and, more importantly, enhanced plaque stability in the diabetic TS model.

My current research focuses on answering the following issue, for which I have developed two mouse models:

  • Regulatory network of diabetic induced plaque instability using the spacial transcriptomics in human carotid plaques.
  • Novel drug targets to treat diabetes and atherosclerosis.
  • Developed the third mouse model where plaque rupture in the mouse coronary plaques.


  • Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute 5 years Fellowship (2019)
  • Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellowship (2019)
  • Heart Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship and Paul Korner Innovation Award (2015)
  • Highest Ranking Victorian Postdoctoral Fellow, Australia (2015)


  • Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute Best of Baker Awards, Runner-up paper in Clinical Epidemiology (2017)
  • Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute Best of Baker Awards, Runner-up paper in Clinical Epidemiology (2017)
  • Heart Foundation Highest Ranked Postdoctoral Applicant in Victoria Award (2015)
  • Heart Foundation Paul Korner Innovation Postdoctoral Fellowship Award (2015)
  • Heart Foundation of Australia, Collaboration and Exchange Award (2015)
  • Australian Atherosclerosis Society, BioASSAYLink Young Investigator Award for Best Oral presentation (2013)
  • Australian Atherosclerosis Society, Travel Award (2012)
  • American Heart Association-ATVB Council, Travel Award (2011)
  • Australian Atherosclerosis Society, Best Student Best Oral Award (2011)
  • Australian Atherosclerosis Society, Travel Award (2011)
  • Baker IDI, Travel Award (2011)
  • International Atherosclerosis Society, Young Investigator Grant (2010)

Publication highlights

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