Dr. Sylvia Evans, Ph.D.

Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
Department of Medicine
School of Medicine

Sylvia Evans picture
Sylvia Evans, Ph.D.

Pronouns: She|Her|Hers

(858) 822-2452

Human Resources

Lydia Heidt (formerly Napa)


Nicholas "Nick" Vistro

Fund Management

Lisa Jandt Auvil

Research Summary

Dr. Evans’ research focuses on defining genetic pathways underlying heart development and to apply that understanding to both congenital and adult heart disease. A basic understanding of heart development is key toward understanding congenital heart disease and will inform potential cell-based therapies to repair diseased hearts. Building a functioning heart requires the specification and interaction of a number of cell lineages of distinct function. The Evans lab is trying to understand the stepwise process by which mesodermal precursors become committed to cardiac progenitors, and then specified to become distinct cardiac lineages.

Dr. Evan’s lab has created a number of Cre-expressing mouse models to examine gene pathways required for specific cardiac lineages, including that of the proepicardial organ, cells that constitute the vasculature, and cardiac fibroblasts.

Academic Achievements

Education: B.S. in Genetics (1979) University of Alberta; Ph.D. in Biochemistry (1984) University of British Colombia; Postdoc in Neuromolecular Biology (1988) The Salk Institute. 

Awards and Honors: Muscular Dystrophy Association Fellowship (1986-1988); Schulman Prize in Cardiovascular Research at UCSD (1998,1999, 2000); Lethbridge Collegiate Institute: Distinguished Graduate Award (1999); Invited participant in NIH Workshop to Determine Future Directions of Cardiovascular Research (2001); Member of American Heart Association Reclassification Task Force (2001); NIH Director’s Pioneer Award (2009); Chair, NHLBI Cardiovascular Development Consortium (2019); Cardiovascular NHLBI Outstanding Investigator Award (2019).

Leadership Experience: Chair, AHA Western Affiliate Peer Review Committee (2000-2002) Chair, MSTP Admissions Committee (2004-2007); EngMed Initiative Executive Committee (2007-); Director, UCSD Stem Cell Program (2016-).

  • Contemporary Topics in Pharmacology (SPPS 218A).
  • Cardiovascular System (SSPPS 231/SOMC 221).
  • Molecular Biology of the Cardiovascular System (BE238/MED238).
  • Individual Research for Undergraduates (BISP199).
Selected Publications