Jangsoon Lee, PhD

Jangsoon (Jason) Lee, PhD

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Associate Member, Cancer Biology Program, University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center

Academic Appointment(s):
Associate Professor (Associate Researcher), University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

PhD, Cancer Biology, Konyang University


AACR-Bristol-Myers Squibb Oncology Scholar-in-Training Award, April 2012
3rd Annual Zeta Tau Alpha Houston Alumnae Association Fellowship in Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research, 2014
FY14 Quarterly Employee Performance Award-2nd Quarter 2014
9th Annual Zeta Tau Alpha Houston Alumnae Association Fellowship in Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research, 2020
Global Breast Cancer Conference 2023, Good poster Award, May 2023

Research Focus

Dr. Lee’s research primarily falls under two main objectives:

  1. Pioneering innovative therapeutic approaches specifically for breast cancer, and
  2. Establishing preclinical research resources tailored to Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander populations.

Dr. Lee is deeply invested in ensuring that the discoveries made in the preclinical phase transition smoothly into clinical trials. This is crucial for expanding and improving the care options available to cancer patients. His expertise encompasses early-phase drug development, including work with small molecules and antibody-drug conjugates, high-throughput screening processes, and various mouse models. These models are especially crucial when studying drug-resistant breast cancer, spontaneous metastasis, and scenarios where human responses need replicating.

One of his core research interests is delving into the intricacies of drug resistance, identifying predictive biomarkers, and understanding the metastatic process and the tumor microenvironment. Specifically, Dr. Lee’s laboratory has been actively exploring areas related to receptors and pathways such as EGFR, HER2, HER3, AR, HDAC, MAPK, and DNA damage repair.

In the past decade, he has forged valuable partnerships with pharmaceutical entities and academic peers. These collaborative efforts have significantly advanced translational research rooted in preclinical findings, leading to the inception of four clinical trials.

In essence, Dr. Lee’s ultimate vision is to alleviate the distress experienced by cancer patients. He aims to achieve this by crafting patient-focused resources and robust preclinical research frameworks, thereby driving transformative translational and clinical research outcomes.

Selected Publications

Xie X, Lee J, Iwase T, Kai M, Ueno NT. Emerging drug targets for triple-negative breast cancer: a guided tour of the preclinical landscape. Expert Opin Ther Targets 26(5):405-25, 5/2022. e-Pub 5/2022. PMID: 35574694.

Yamazaki CM, Yamaguchi A, Anami Y, Xiong W, Otani Y, Lee J, Ueno NT, Zhang N, An Z, Tsuchikama K. Antibody-drug conjugates with dual payloads for combating breast tumor heterogeneity and drug resistance. Nat Commun 12(1):3528, 6/2021. e-Pub 6/2021. PMCID: PMC8192907.

Lee J, Liu H, Pearson T, Iwase T, Fuson J, Lalani AS, Eli LD, Diala I, Tripathy D, Lim B, Ueno NT. PI3K and MAPK Pathways as Targets for Combination with the Pan-HER Irreversible Inhibitor Neratinib in HER2-Positive Breast Cancer and TNBC by Kinome RNAi Screening. Biomedicines 9(7), 6/2021. e-Pub 6/2021. PMCID: PMC8301343.

Lim B, Peterson CB, Davis A, Cho E, Pearson T, Liu H, Hwang M, Ueno NT, Lee J. ONC201 and an MEK Inhibitor Trametinib Synergistically Inhibit the Growth of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Cells. Biomedicines 9(10), 10/2021. e-Pub 10/2021. PMCID: PMC8533320.

Lim B, Murthy RK, Lee J, Jackson SA, Iwase T, Davis DW, Willey JS, Wu J, Shen Y, Tripathy D, Alvarez R, Ibrahim NK, Brewster AM, Barcenas CH, Brown PH, Giordano SH, Moulder SL, Booser DJ, Moscow JA, Piekarz R, Valero V, Ueno NT. A phase Ib study of entinostat plus lapatinib with or without trastuzumab in patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer that progressed during trastuzumab treatment. Br J Cancer 120(12):1105-1112, 6/2019. e-Pub 5/2019. PMCID: PMC6738035.

Publication list via PubMed

Active Grants

Role: Co-Investigator. PI: Yun and Ueno
"Validation of a novel 3D culture platform for TNBC treatment selection"

Role: Co-Investigator. PI: Ueno and EnduRx Pharma
"Development of a novel tumor-targeting and penetrating nanosystem for cancer therapy"