International Journal of Translational Research

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International Journal of Translational Research-Lung cancer and liver cancer are the two biggest threats to Chinese cancer patients-Liang Chen


Assistant Investigator,
NIBS, Beijingï-China.


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Liang Chen


Assistant Investigator,

Research Interests:

Lung cancer and liver cancer are the two biggest threats to Chinese cancer patients, which claim yearly 600,000 lives and 230,000 lives respectively in mainland China. The ultimate goal of research in our laboratory is to cure both diseases. Specifically, research will focus on the following four areas:

  • Identifying key oncogenes responsible for tumorigenesis of lung cancer and liver cancer in Chinese cancer patients. It's been shown that although a cancer cell has many genetic and epigenetic alterations, survival and proliferation of the cancer cell is often severely affected by inactivation of a single key oncogene. One important area of our lab is to identify oncogenes responsible for driving tumorigenesis in Chinese lung cancer and liver cancer patients, which is the first step for developing targeting therapies.
  • Deciphering the changes happened to tumor suppressor genes in the process of tumorigenesis. In parallel to gain-of-function mutation in oncogenes, deregulation in tumor suppressor genes plays an important role in tumorigenesis. We will use cellular and mouse models to study the genetic and epigenetic changes happened in tumor suppressor genes during tumorigenesis.
  • Developing targeting therapies against lung cancer and liver cancer. Despite the multimodality therapies against both cancers, the 5 year survival rate remains disappointingly low for both lung cancer and liver cancer. Effective therapies are desperately needed in clinic. Both cellular and mouse models will be utilized to characterize the biology of the tumor driven by a given oncogene. Based on that information, we will design and run a preclinical trial in mouse model with small chemicals/antibodies developed.
  • Identifying serum protein biomarkers for early diagnosis of lung and liver cancer. The most effective way to benefit cancer patients is through diagnose cancers at early stage when the tumor can be successfully treated or surgically removed. With well-characterized mouse model that develop tumors after activation of oncogenic transgene, we will collect serum from mouse with early stage tumors. By comparing the serum samples from tumor-bearing mouse and well-controlled healthy siblings through mass-spectrometry, we plan to look for the protein biomarkers that are selectively present in the tumor-bearing mouse. The potential use of these biomarkers will then be confirmed on the patients- sera.



  • 2002- Ph.D. in Cell Biology, Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
  • 1996- B.S. in Biotechnology, Department of Biology, Hangzhou University, Zhejiang, China

Professional Experience:

  • 2010 - Assistant Investigator, National Institute of Biological Sciences, Beijing, China.
  • 2005-2010 - Postdoctoral Fellowï-Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School.
  • 2002- 2005 - Postdoctoral Fellowï-Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine.