Jianzhu Chen

Jianzhu Chen

Professor of Biology; Singapore Research Professor; Intramural Faculty, Koch Institute

Jianzhu Chen studies the immune system, harnessing the body’s defense force to explore treatment and prevention for cancer, as well as metabolic and infectious diseases.





Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research


Ryan Hayman



Assistant Phone


  • PhD, 1990, Stanford University
  • BS, 1982, Biology, Wuhan University

Research Summary 

We seek to understand the immune system and its application in cancer immunotherapy and vaccine development. We study the molecular and cellular mechanisms behind immunological and disease processes, leveraging the vast array of genomic data, humanized mice and clinical samples.


  • American Association for the Advancement of Science, Fellow, 2012

Key Publications

  1. High-throughput phenotypic screen and transcriptional analysis identify new compounds and targets for macrophage reprogramming. Hu, G, Su, Y, Kang, BH, Fan, Z, Dong, T, Brown, DR, Cheah, J, Wittrup, KD, Chen, J. 2021. Nat Commun 12, 773.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-021-21066-xPMID:33536439
  2. CAR-T cells targeting a nucleophosmin neoepitope exhibit potent specific activity in mouse models of acute myeloid leukaemia. Xie, G, Ivica, NA, Jia, B, Li, Y, Dong, H, Liang, Y, Brown, D, Romee, R, Chen, J. 2021. Nat Biomed Eng 5, 399-413.
    doi: 10.1038/s41551-020-00625-5PMID:33046866
  3. MFSD7C switches mitochondrial ATP synthesis to thermogenesis in response to heme. Li, Y, Ivica, NA, Dong, T, Papageorgiou, DP, He, Y, Brown, DR, Kleyman, M, Hu, G, Chen, WW, Sullivan, LB et al.. 2020. Nat Commun 11, 4837.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-020-18607-1PMID:32973183
  4. Vitamin D3-vitamin D receptor axis suppresses pulmonary emphysema by maintaining alveolar macrophage homeostasis and function. Hu, G, Dong, T, Wang, S, Jing, H, Chen, J. 2019. EBioMedicine 45, 563-577.
    doi: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2019.06.039PMID:31278070
  5. Sensitizing protective tumor microenvironments to antibody-mediated therapy. Pallasch, CP, Leskov, I, Braun, CJ, Vorholt, D, Drake, A, Soto-Feliciano, YM, Bent, EH, Schwamb, J, Iliopoulou, B, Kutsch, N et al.. 2014. Cell 156, 590-602.
    doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2013.12.041PMID:24485462

Recent Publications

  1. Adhesive anti-fibrotic interfaces on diverse organs. Wu, J, Deng, J, Theocharidis, G, Sarrafian, TL, Griffiths, LG, Bronson, RT, Veves, A, Chen, J, Yuk, H, Zhao, X et al.. 2024. Nature 630, 360-367.
    doi: 10.1038/s41586-024-07426-9PMID:38778109
  2. Bosutinib Stimulates Macrophage Survival, Phagocytosis, and Intracellular Killing of Bacteria. da Silva, RAG, Stocks, CJ, Hu, G, Kline, KA, Chen, J. 2024. ACS Infect Dis 10, 1725-1738.
    doi: 10.1021/acsinfecdis.4c00086PMID:38602352
  3. Nonpathogenic E. coli engineered to surface display cytokines as a new platform for immunotherapy. Yang, S, Sheffer, M, Kaplan, IE, Wang, Z, Tarannum, M, Dinh, K, Abdulhamid, Y, Shapiro, R, Porter, R, Soiffer, R et al.. 2024. Res Sq , .
    doi: 10.21203/rs.3.rs-4031911/v1PMID:38562821
  4. Activation of GPR3-β-arrestin2-PKM2 pathway in Kupffer cells stimulates glycolysis and inhibits obesity and liver pathogenesis. Dong, T, Hu, G, Fan, Z, Wang, H, Gao, Y, Wang, S, Xu, H, Yaffe, MB, Vander Heiden, MG, Lv, G et al.. 2024. Nat Commun 15, 807.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-024-45167-5PMID:38280848
  5. Monovalent SARS-COV-2 mRNA vaccine using optimal UTRs and LNPs is highly immunogenic and broadly protective against Omicron variants. Ye, Z, Bonam, SR, McKay, LGA, Plante, JA, Walker, J, Zhao, Y, Huang, C, Chen, J, Xu, C, Li, Y et al.. 2023. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 120, e2311752120.
    doi: 10.1073/pnas.2311752120PMID:38134199
  6. IGFBPL1 is a master driver of microglia homeostasis and resolution of neuroinflammation in glaucoma and brain tauopathy. Pan, L, Cho, KS, Wei, X, Xu, F, Lennikov, A, Hu, G, Tang, J, Guo, S, Chen, J, Kriukov, E et al.. 2023. Cell Rep 42, 112889.
    doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2023.112889PMID:37527036
  7. Mitoxantrone targets both host and bacteria to overcome vancomycin resistance in Enterococcus faecalis. da Silva, RAG, Wong, JJ, Antypas, H, Choo, PY, Goh, K, Jolly, S, Liang, C, Tay Kwan Sing, L, Veleba, M, Hu, G et al.. 2023. Sci Adv 9, eadd9280.
    doi: 10.1126/sciadv.add9280PMID:36812322
  8. Selective expression of variant surface antigens enables Plasmodium falciparum to evade immune clearance in vivo. Chew, M, Ye, W, Omelianczyk, RI, Pasaje, CF, Hoo, R, Chen, Q, Niles, JC, Chen, J, Preiser, P. 2022. Nat Commun 13, 4067.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-31741-2PMID:35831417
  9. Memory-like NK cells armed with a neoepitope-specific CAR exhibit potent activity against NPM1 mutated acute myeloid leukemia. Dong, H, Ham, JD, Hu, G, Xie, G, Vergara, J, Liang, Y, Ali, A, Tarannum, M, Donner, H, Baginska, J et al.. 2022. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 119, e2122379119.
    doi: 10.1073/pnas.2122379119PMID:35696582
  10. Ovarian Cancer Ascites Inhibits Transcriptional Activation of NK Cells Partly through CA125. Fraser, CC, Jia, B, Hu, G, Al Johani, LI, Fritz-Klaus, R, Ham, JD, Fichorova, RN, Elias, KM, Cramer, DW, Patankar, MS et al.. 2022. J Immunol 208, 2227-2238.
    doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.2001095PMID:35396222
More Publications
Photo credit: Kelsey Montgomery