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Research Highlights

Our research centers on deciphering the cellular and molecular mechanisms controlling antitumor immunity, and exploiting knowledge to device the next-generation cancer immunotherapies.

Two active research projects are:

  1. Identify new immune checkpoints and develop new immune checkpoint blockade therapy for cancer.
  2. Develop stem cell-engineered, “off-the-shelf” CAR-iNKT cell therapy for treating a broad range of blood cancers and solid tumors. 

Featured Publications

Wang Y-C, Wang X, Yu J, Ma F, Li Z, Zhou Y, Zeng S, Ma X, Li Y-R, Neal A, Huang J, To A, Clarke N, Memarzadeh S, Pellegrini M, and Yang L. Targeting monoamine oxidase A-regulated tumor-associated macrophage polarization for cancer immunotherapy. Nat. Commun. 2021, 12:3530 (epub on June 10) [Nature Communications  PDF][UCLA News  PDF][CBS News  PDF][NBC News  PDF][Fierce Biotech News  PDF][Drug Target Review News  PDF]

Wang X, Li B, Kim Y, Wang Y, Li Z, Yu J, Zeng S, Ma X, Choi I, Di Biase S, Smith DJ, Zhou Y, Li Y, Ma F, Huang J, Clarke N, To A, Gong L, Pham A, Moon H, Pellegrini M, and Yang L. Targeting monoamine oxidase A for T cell-based cancer immunotherapy. Sci. Immunol. 2021, 6:eabh2383 (epub ahead of print). [Science Immunology  PDF][Science Magazine News  PDF][UCLA News  PDF][CBS News  PDF][NBC News  PDF][Fierce Biotech News  PDF][Drug Target Review News  PDF]

Zhu Y.*, Smith DJ*, Zhou Y, Li YR, Yu J, Lee D, Wang Y-C, Di Biase S, Wang Xi, Hardoy C, Ku J, Tsao T, Lin LJ, Pham AT, Moon H, McLaughlin J, Cheng D, Hollis RP, Campo-Fernandez B, Urbinati F, Wei L, Pang L, Rezek V, Berent-Maoz B, Macabali MH, Gjertson D, Wang X, Galic Z, Kitchen SG, An DS, Hu-Lieskovan S, Kaplan-Lefko PJ, De Oliveira SN, Seet CS, Larson SM, Forman SJ, Heath JR, Zack JA, Crooks GM, Radu GR, Ribas A, Kohn DB, Witte ON, and Yang L. (Co-first authors). Development of hematopoietic stem cell-engineered invariant natural killer T cell therapy for cancer. Cell Stem Cell. 2019, 25(4):542-557. Epub 2019  Sept 5. [Link][PDF][CSC Highlight]

Featured News

June 12, 2021

We are currently recruiting PhD students (2 openings) and postdoctoral researchers (3 openings). Welcome to apply! [PhD Openings][Postdoc Openings]...... Read More

June 10, 2021

Our two papers are published on Science Immunology and Nature Communications, reporting the identification of monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) as...... Read More

May 18, 2021

Dr. Lili Yang receives a $5.9 million CIRM Partnering Opportunity for Translational Research Projects Award to translate a new stem...... Read More

May 11, 2021

Our off-the-shelf cell therapy technology is licensed by a Biotech startup, Appia Bio, for commercial development. The company launches with...... Read More