William J. Janssen, MD
Photo: William J. Janssen



Elected 2019

Dr. Janssen is a physician-scientist at National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado where he is an Associate Professor of Medicine and the Section Head for Critical Care Medicine. He is also an Associate Professor at the University of Colorado Denver, where he is a member of the Division of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care Medicine. Dr. Janssen completed his medical school training and internal medicine residency at The Ohio State University. After serving a year as a Chief Resident for Internal Medicine at Ohio State, he matriculated to the University of Colorado for fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. As part of his fellowship training, Dr. Janssen joined Dr. Peter Henson’s laboratory at National Jewish Health where he explored how surfactant proteins influence alveolar macrophage phagocytic and inflammatory functions.

Dr. Janssen’s laboratory currently explores how lung macrophage subsets orchestrate the resolution of acute inflammation and promote the repair of injured lung tissue. His group has identifiednovel macrophage subsets in the inflamed lung and has shown that these subsets differentially contribute to the inflammatory response and to tissue repair. His group has also defined the pathways that regulate macrophage cell fate and has shown that these can be therapeutically targeted to alter lung repair. Lastly, his group has characterized the immunometabolic programs that drive lung macrophage reparative and inflammatory functions.

Importantly, the concepts that Dr. Janssen has uncovered extend beyond acute inflammatory lung diseases. He and his colleagues have demonstrated that macrophage subsets provide differential contributions to the development of pulmonary hypertension, asthma and COPD. He has also been highly successful with grant funding; since transitioning to scientific independence in 2012, he has been awarded 4 NIH R01s and a 7-year R35 program grant. Lastly, Dr. Janssen has developed a track record as a mentor. In the past year, trainees from his lab have received a K99R00, a K08 and a Parker B. Francis award.