Dr. Shih-Shih Chen received her bachelor’s degree from Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taiwan, and her master’s in Pharmacy from the National Yang-Ming University. She later received her doctorate in molecular genetics in the Ohio State University in the US. Her thesis focused on global epigenetic changes in Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL) disease initiation and development using a mouse model of CLL.
In 2008, Dr. Chen was recruited as a postdoctoral fellow by Dr. Nicholas Chiorazzi to work at The Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research. Her work has focused primarily on developing mouse models of human CLL, and using these models to address scientifically- and medically- relevant questions. Dr. Chen’s research has received a number of awards at national and international meetings.
Recently, Dr. Chen received a position in the Karches Center for CLL Research of The Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research at the rank of Assistant Professor in the lab of Dr. Nicholas Chiorazzi. She is now focusing on translational cancer research. Her long-term goal is to find a way to cure CLL by combining laboratory bench work with pre-clinical research and clinical trials.
Dr. Chen is interested in establishing a robust mouse xenograft model of CLL using primary patient cells and then employing this model to study the heterogeneity of CLL patients’ cells. Together with other colleagues, Dr. Chen has been integral in helping the Chiorazzi lab develop a xenograft model of human CLL that requires activated autologous T cells to support CLL B cell engraftment and proliferation. Furthermore, she has demonstrated in various animal models the heterogeneity of CLL clones collected from patient lymph nodes and peripheral blood. Specifically, she has successfully demonstrated that the very minor fraction of CLL clones that has the ability to home back to lymphoid tissues survives for the longest period of time in mice, and that another minor fraction enriched in active B cells can elicit autologous T-cell activation in lymphoid tissues. This work has suggested potential new therapeutic targets to treat CLL.
Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taiwan
Field of Study: Biology
National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan
Field of Study: Pharmacy
The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
Field of Study: Molecular Genetics