The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Department of Breast Medical Oncology
My research is focused on identifying novel therapeutic targets and prognostic biomarkers for patients with breast cancer, particularly inflammatory breast cancer (IBC), the most aggressive type of breast cancer and one for which effective targeted therapies are limited. My long-term research goal is to improve the survival of breast cancer patients and IBC patients by developing effective therapeutic interventions through hypothesis-driven translational research. My group’s main projects include 1) elucidating the roles of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and Axl receptor tyrosine kinase in promoting the aggressiveness of IBC and triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC); 2) determining the molecular mechanisms underlying the cross-talk between EGFR- or Axl-targeted therapy and the tumor microenvironment (TME) in IBC and TNBC; and 3) developing novel approaches combining TME-targeting and EGFR- or Axl-targeting therapy for IBC and TNBC.
Students rotating in my group will learn how to design experiments, perform a variety of preclinical assays and techniques to examine the role of target proteins in promoting tumor growth and metastasis, and use both in vitro and in vivo models to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of cancer treatment drugs. Students will have opportunities to work with clinical samples and communicate with breast cancer oncologists and pharmaceutical companies. Students will also gain experience in presenting scientific findings.
Education & Training
PhD, Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P. R. China, 2002