Charles Lang, MS, PhD

    • 12442 Citations
    • 62 h-Index
    1980 …2022
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    Personal profile

    Research interests

    For the past 35 years, Dr. Charles Lang's research has focused on the mechanisms by which catabolic insults produce changes in glucose and protein metabolism in skeletal and cardiac muscle, and the role of immunomodulators in regulating muscle wasting and cardiac function.

    The Lang laboratory has made seminal contributions to understanding the translational control exerted by growth factors and nutrients during catabolic states, including sepsis, burns, disuse atrophy, diabetes and alcohol misuse. Currently, funded by an MERIT Award from the NIH, the lab's research is aimed at better understanding the cellular mechanism by which chronic alcohol abuse and acute alcohol intoxication impair muscle protein balance.

    The Lang lab's early work was the first to identify alcohol-induced decreases in mRNA translation and mTOR activity in muscle. Distinct from the protein synthetic changes produced by sepsis, which was also pursued in the past, the alcohol-induced changes were found to be independent of inflammatory cytokines and steroids. Moreover, although skeletal muscle and heart are both striated muscle, the data highlighted the different cellular mechanism of action by which alcohol adversely impacts these two tissues.

    Recent work has focused on the ability of alcohol to impair leucine, insulin and IGF-I action in muscle as well as its ability to completely antagonize contraction-induced accretion of muscle protein synthesis. Lang's work has also documented that alcohol negatively interacts with other catabolic insults, such as disuse or aging, resulting in a synergistic interaction on muscle protein balance affecting both the synthetic and degradative side of the protein balance equation.

    The Lang lab's studies employee in vivo approaches to assess the clinical and translational relevance, and in vitro systems of C1C12 myotubes so that mechanistic details can be better defined.

    A second area of research interest involves sepsis-induced changes in muscle protein metabolism both synthetic and degradative pathways.

    Teaching and educational interests

    Dr. Charles Lang is Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and oversees educational activities related to the multiple doctoral, master’s and certificate programs at Penn State College of Medicine. He has been recognized as a Distinguished Educator for the breadth and depth of his experiences training the next generation of physicians, scientists and clinician-scientists. He was the director for two interdisciplinary courses in the medical curriculum and director for an intercampus graduate-level course in physiology. He is currently the co-director for Biomedical Research Ethics. He has served as director of the intercollege doctoral program in Molecular Medicine.

    Dr. Lang has focused on training top graduate and medical students for careers in translational science as the past Program Director for T32 postdoctoral NIGMS-funded training grant and as director of the TL1 component for Penn State Clinical and Translational Science Institute. He has mentored postdoctoral fellows (MDs and PhDs), surgical residents and graduate students, many of whom have garnered F-awards from the NIH. He has served on mentoring committees for junior faculty with K-awards and through the Junior Faculty Development Program, and on the Executive Committee for the Physician Scientist Training Program.

    Dr. Lang has been a member/chair of committees focused on curriculum development and review, academic progress, and LCME accreditation. He has been a permanent member/chair of multiple NIH study sections. He has been a reviewer for education and research training grants, including FIPSE and fellowships from the Shriner’s Hospital and NIGMS. He is the past editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Physiology: Endocrinology and Metabolism, and has given invited seminars on research and publication misconduct. Dr. Lang is devoted to the advancement of science though improving training and mentorship.

    Education/Academic qualification

    Postdoctoral Fellow, LSU Health Sciences Center - New Orleans


    PhD, Hahnemann University Medical College


    External positions

    Councilor, American Physiological Society

    Jan 1 2017Jan 1 2020

    Councilor, American Physiological Society


    President, Shock Society

    Jan 1 2014

    President, Shock Society


    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Charles Lang is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    • 8 Similar Profiles
    Skeletal Muscle Medicine & Life Sciences
    Insulin-Like Growth Factor I Medicine & Life Sciences
    Glucose Medicine & Life Sciences
    Sepsis Medicine & Life Sciences
    Endotoxins Medicine & Life Sciences
    Muscle Proteins Medicine & Life Sciences
    Alcohols Medicine & Life Sciences
    Muscles Medicine & Life Sciences

    Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

    Projects 1987 2022

    Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
    Muscle Proteins
    Heart Diseases
    Muscle Proteins
    HIV Protease Inhibitors
    Skeletal Muscle

    Training Program in Trauma and Organ Injury

    Lang, C., Souba, W. & Cooney, R. N.

    National Institutes of Health


    Project: Research project

    Wounds and Injuries
    Professional Competence
    Hot Temperature
    Wounds and Injuries

    Research Output 1980 2019

    TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases
    Skeletal Muscle

    Resistin directly inhibits bacterial killing in neutrophils

    Miller, L., Singbartl, K., Chroneos, Z., Ruiz-Velasco, V., Lang, C. & Bonavia, A., May 30 2019, In : Intensive Care Medicine Experimental. 7, 30

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Acute alcohol prevents the refeeding-induced decrease in autophagy but does not alter the increased protein synthetic response in heart

    Mekheal, M., Steiner, J. L. & Lang, C., Dec 1 2018, In : Alcohol. 73, p. 79-88 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Combination of hindlimb suspension and immobilization by casting exaggerates sarcopenia by stimulating autophagy but does not worsen osteopenia

    Speacht, T. L., Krause, A. R., Steiner, J. L., Lang, C. & Donahue, H. J., May 1 2018, In : Bone. 110, p. 29-37 9 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Hindlimb Suspension
    Metabolic Bone Diseases
    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Effects of phytonutrients alone or in combination with monensin on productivity in lactating dairy cows

    Oh, J., Harper, M., Lang, C., Wall, E. H. & Hristov, A. N., Aug 1 2018, In : Journal of dairy science. 101, 8, p. 7190-7198 9 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle