From China to Princeton: Yibin Kang's journey as an immigrant scientist to disrupt cancer metastasis

June 1, 2022 -- It's been an amazing odyssey of scientific discovery for Yibin Kang, PhD, Warner-Lambert/Parke-Davis professor of molecular biology at Princeton University. Born in a small fishing village in China to parents who were both educators, Kang from an early age had a strong interest in nature and science -- a passion that led to his becoming a cancer biologist in the U.S.

Kang, who spent his graduate and postdoctoral years in Michigan, North Carolina, and New York City, has been at Princeton since 2004 where the focus of his research has been on cancer metastasis. The Kang Laboratory at Princeton applies modern molecular biology, genomics, and computational biology approaches to understand the molecular basis of cancer metastasis.

For more than 15 years, Kang has been investigating a little-known but deadly gene called metadherin (MTDH). His groundbreaking research recently appeared in two papers with co-authors in the journal Nature Cancer in November 2021, demonstrating in mice that blocking the interaction between MTDH and another protein disables its function and prevents metastasis.

As a result, Kang sees the potential for new therapeutic interventions for treating common cancers, including breast, lung, colon, liver, and prostate. Kang's team also recently discovered a new organelle that plays a role in bone metastasis and is formed via liquid-liquid phase separation -- the process by which liquid blobs of living materials merge into each other.

Watch the video below to learn more.

Researchers find resistance mechanism in pancreatic cancer
A study on the novel resistance mechanism that drives metastasis in pancreatic cancer -- and that could be targeted with pharmaceutical therapies -- has...
Pancreatic stellate cells promote cancer cell proliferation, tumor growth
Using optical imaging to study metabolic processes as they relate to tumor growth, researchers hope to better understand the tumor microenvironment and...
Scientists identify diagnostic gene signature for breast cancer
Researchers have identified a diagnostic signature for genetic mutations and other abnormalities associated with drug resistance and poor outcomes in...
Cancer Cell Map Initiative reveals protein interactions that drive cancer
A research group has mapped previously unknown interactions between proteins that drive cancer, thereby revealing potential new biomarkers and drug targets....
Microscopic defects of healthy cells affect spread of ovarian cancer cells
Biophysics researchers have applied the concept of topological defects to investigate the spread of ovarian cancer cells. Using an in vitro model, the...
Volastra nabs $44M to advance metastasis-targeted drug discovery
Volastra Therapeutics has raised $44 million to further build-out its technology platform, which exploits insights into chromosomal instability to...
Scientists connect gene to cancer metastasis for the first time
Researchers have identified new functionality of a previously underappreciated gene, leucine-rich repeat neuronal 4 C-terminal like (LRRN4CL), which is...

Copyright © 2022

Science Advisory Board on LinkedIn
Science Advisory Board on Facebook
Science Advisory Board on Twitter