Linda Demer*

Linda L Demer

Professor, Medicine, University of California Los Angeles

Professor, Physiology, University of California Los Angeles

(310) 206-2677

Mailing Address:
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Medicine, Physiology, and Bioengineering
A2-237 CHS
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Work Address:
UCLA Department of Medicine
Box 951679, CHS 17-052
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Work Phone Number:
(310) 825-8811


Executive Director, UCLA Specialty Training and Advanced Research (STAR) Program
Executive Vice Chair, Medicine

Research Interests

It has long been known that bone tissue and even marrow can form in human arteries, usually near cholesterol deposits. This process has been attributed to passive crystal precipitation in dying cells. The Cardiovascular Biomineralization Research Group, directed by Dr. Linda Demer, has shown that the process is both regulated and related to embryonic bone formation. They developed the first tissue culture model of vascular calcification, isolated and cloned the cells responsible for producing calcium mineral, and identified the regulatory molecules controlling the process by which the cells differentiate into bone cells. Based on comparisons to bone cells, they are providing evidence that high cholesterol may contribute not only to atherosclerotic calcification, but also to osteoporosis.