Rong Tian, joint UW professor of anesthesiology/pain medicine and bioengineering, was interviewed for an article appearing in the May 12 issue of Circulation Research. Dr. Tian, who is director of UW Medicine’s Mitochondria and Metabolism Research Center, investigates the role of mitochondria and pathogenesis in cardiovascular and metabolic disease. Her laboratory is developing new tools to manipulate and assess cell metabolism and mitochondrial function in living systems, and aims to improve cellular resistance to environmental stress and diseases through engineering metabolism.

In the interview, Dr. Tian talks about growing up during the Cultural Revolution in China and her experience starting medical school when it was over — at age 16. After she graduated at age 21, she was selected to travel abroad to Denmark to earn her Ph.D, and later started a fellowship at Harvard University. She reflects on how an opportunity to start a mitochondrial metabolism center at UW brought her to Seattle, and offers advice to young investigators on how to pave their path in research.