One of my earliest memories was a chemistry magic my dad performed on my 4th birthday, and I have been fascinated with science ever since. Before I was old enough to get access to labs and mentored trainings, my backyard experiments frequently resulted in failures and unexpected explosions, but that didn’t stop me from pursuing intriguing questions in science. Currently, I’m a postdoctoral fellow in the Mooney laboratory at Harvard University, seeking to advance biology and medicine through interdisciplinary research.

Specifically, my research focuses on two topics: cancer immunotherapy and stem cell mechanotransduction. Harnessing the immune system to treat cancer has been a long-sought goal in medicine. After decades of effort, cancer immunology has finally overcome the doubts and demonstrated efficacy in clinical trials. I am working to understand how tumors escape immune surveillance, and use the knowledge to develop biomaterial-based cancer vaccines that can target and program immune cells to attack tumors. For my second project, I am interested in understanding how stem cells sense and respond to their physical microenvironment. Similar to biochemical factors, mechanical signals also participate in directing biological processes such as development and regeneration. How is the activity of stem cells regulated by the mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix? Can we use various mechanical cues to direct stem cell behavior and promote tissue regeneration, both in vitro and in vivo?

Ph.D. in Chemistry with a Specialization in Multi-Scale Biology (interdisciplinary program supported by HHMI and NIBIB), University of California, San Diego
Advisor: Prof. Michael J. Sailor

M.S. in Chemistry, University of California, San Diego

B.S. in Chemistry, Peking University