An NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center
Yaun Chen

Yuan Chen, Ph.D.

Dean, Transdisciplinary Research; Professor, Department of Molecular Medicine
Research Focus
  • Cancer biology
  • Molecular and cellular biology
Email: [email protected]

Research Teams

Yuan Chen, Ph.D., is currently Dean of Transdisciplinary Research and Professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine at the Beckman Research Institute of the City of Hope.  She obtained B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Science and Technology of China, and Ph.D. in Structural Biology and Biochemistry from Rutgers University.  She then conducted postdoctoral studies at the Scripps Research Institute before joining Beckman Research Institute of the City of Hope as tenure-track faculty in 1994.  Her current research interests center on the role of ubiquitin-like modifications in major oncogenesis pathways, and the development of therapies by targeting novel mechanisms to address unmet medical needs in cancers. 


City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center, 1500 East Duarte Road

Duarte, CA 91010

Multi-kinase inhibitor with anti-p38γ activity in cutaneous T cell lymphoma. Xu ‎Z, Nam S, Wu J, Chen C-H,‎ Liu X, Li H, Mckeithan T, Gong Q, Chan J, Yin H, Yuan Y-C, Pillai R, Querfeld C, Horne D, Chen Y, Rosen ST.  Journal of Investigative Dermatology, in press.
The anti-cancer activity of a first-in-class small molecule targeting PCNA.  Gu L, Lingeman RG, Yakushijin F, Sun E, Cui Q, Chao J, Hu W, Li H, Hickey RJ, Stark JM, Yuan YC, Chen Y, Vonderfecht SL, Synold TW, Shi Y, Reckamp KL, Horne D, Malkas LH.  Clin Cancer Res., in press.
SUMO-mediated Regulation of NLRP3 Critically Modulates Inflammasome Activity. Barry R, John SW, Tenev T, Chen C-H, Choi J, Kasperkiewicz P, Alnemri E, Drag M, Chen Y and Meier P. Nature Communications, 9(1):3001, 2018.
SUMOylation Regulates miR-34b/c Targeted Gene Expression Program. Li Y-J, Du L, Aldana-Masangkay GI, Wang X, Urak R, Forman S, Rosen ST, and Chen Y. Nucleic Acid Research, 46(14):7108-7123, 2018.
A stromal metabolic plasticity induced by cancer-directed MYC extension. Yan W, Zhou W, Fong M, Liu J, Liu X, Chen C-H, Fadare O, Liu L, Liu X, Cao M, Chin A, Jiang S, Ren X, Chen Y, Locasale J, and Wang SE. Nature Cell Biology, 20(5):597-609, 2018.
Streptonigrin inhibits SENP1 and induces degradation of hypoxia-inducible factor 1α. Chen C-H, Ambaye N, Li Y-J, Khanna, S, Chen Y. Biochemistry, 57(11):1807-1813, 2018.
Targeted inhibition of TET1 transcription as a potent therapeutic strategy for acute myeloid leukemia. Jiang X, Hu C, Ferchen K, Nie J, Cui X, Chen C-H, Zuo Z, Seibel W, Skibbe JR, Cheng L, Tang Y, Wunderlich M, Reinhold WC, Arnovitz S, Ulrich B, Lu J, Weng H, Su R, Huang H, Dong L, Wang Y, Li C, Qin X, Mulloy J, Zheng Y, Diao J, Jin J, Li C, Liu PL, He C, Chen Y, Chen J. Nature Communications, 8(1):2099, 2017.
A phase I clinical trial of binimetinib in combination with FOLFOX in patients with advanced metastatic colorectal cancer who failed prior standard therapy. Cho M, Gong J, Paul Frankel P, Synold TW, Chung LD, Chao J, Li D, Chen Y, Sentovich S, Melstrom K, Singh G, Luevanos E, Fakih M. Oncotarget, 8(45):79750-79760, 2017.
Domain alternation and active site remodeling are conserved structural features of ubiquitin E1. Lv Z, Yuan L, Atkison JH, Aldana-Masangkay GI, Chen Y, & Olsen SK. J. Biol. Chem. 292(29):12089-12099, 2017.
MEK162 Enhances Antitumor Activity of 5-Fluorouracil and Trifluridine in KRAS-mutated Human Colorectal Cancer Cell Lines. Gong J, Chen Y, Yang L, Pillai R, Shirasawa S, Fakih M. Anticancer Res. 37(6):2831-2838, 2017.
Role of SUMO activating enzyme in cancer stem cell maintenance and self-renewal. Du L, Li YJ, Fakih M, Wiatrek RL, Duldulao M, Chen Z, Chu P, Garcia-Aguilar J, Chen Y. Nature Commun. 7:12326, 2016.
HIF-1-alpha links mitochondrial perturbation to the dynamic acquisition of breast cancer tumorigenicity. Kuo CY, Cheng CT, Hou P, Lin YP, Ma H, Chung Y, Chi K, Chen Y, Li W, Kung HJ, Ann DK. Oncotarget. 7(23):34052-69, 2016.
Namanja AT, Wang J, Buettner R, Colson L, Chen Y.  Allosteric Communication across STAT3 Domains Associated with STAT3 Function and Disease-Causing Mutation. J. Mol. Biol, 428(3):579-89, 2016.
Alontaga AY, Ambaye ND, Li YJ, Vega R, Chen CH, Bzymek KP, Williams JC, Hu W, Chen Y.  Observation of an E2 (Ubc9)-homodimer by crystallography. DiB, 7:195-200, 2016.
Yue P, Lopez-Tapia F, Paladino D, Li Y, Chen CH, Namanja AT, Hilliard T, Chen Y, Tius MA, Turkson J.  Hydroxamic Acid and Benzoic Acid-Based STAT3 Inhibitors Suppress Human Glioma and Breast Cancer Phenotypes In Vitro and In Vivo.  Cancer Res. 76(3):652-63, 2016.
RWD Domain as an E2 (Ubc9)-Interaction Module.  Alontaga AY, Ambaye ND, Li YJ, Vega R, Chen CH, Bzymek KP, Williams JC, Hu W, Chen Y. J Biol Chem. 290 (27):16550-9, 2015.
Alontaga A, Chen Y.  Reply to Function and Structure of the RWD Domain.  J Biol Chem. 290(33):20628, 2015.
Madu IG, Li S, Li B, Li H, Chang T, Li YJ, Vega R, Rossi J, Yee JK, Zaia J, Chen Y.  A Novel Class of HIV-1 Antiviral Agents Targeting HIV via a SUMOylation-Dependent Mechanism.  Sci Rep, 5:17808, 2015.
Miklossy G, Youn UJ, Yue P, Zhang M, Chen CH, Hilliard TS, Paladino D, Li Y, Choi J, Sarkaria JN, Kawakami JK, Wongwiwatthananukit S, Chen Y, Sun D, Chang LC, Turkson J.  Hirsutinolide Series Inhibit Stat3 Activity, Alter GCN1, MAP1B, Hsp105, G6PD, Vimentin, TrxR1, and Importin α-2 Expression, and Induce Antitumor Effects against Human Glioma.  J Med Chem. 58(19):7734-48, 2015.
Alontaga AY, Li Y, Chen C, Ma C, Malany S, Key DE, Sergienko E, Sun Q, Whipple DA, Matharu DS, Li B, Vega R, Li Y, Schoenen FJ, Blagg BJ, Chung TDY, Chen Y.  Design of High Throughput Screening Assays and Identification of a SUMO1-Specific Small Molecule Chemotype Targeting the SUMO-Interacting Motif-Binding Surface. ACS Combinatorial Science, 17(4):239-46, 2015.
Fong MY, Zhou W, Liu L, Alontaga AY, Chandra M, Ashby J, Chow A, O’Connor STF, Li S, Chin AR, Somlo G, Palomares M, Li Z, Tremblay JR, Tsuyada A, Sun G, Reid MA, Wu X, Swiderski P, Ren X, Shi Y, Kong M, Zhong W, Chen Y, Wang SE. Breast cancer-secreted miR-122 reprograms glucose metabolism in premetastatic niche to promote metastasis. Nature Cell Biol. 17(2):183-94, 2015.

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