Feng Chen  PhD

Associate Professor

Department of Medicine

Department of Cell Biology & Physiology

Division of Biology & Biological Sciences

Updated June/2016

Research Interests


Our laboratory studies the genetic determinants and pathogenic mechanisms of kidney diseases and cancer with the goal of improving diagnostic and therapeutic strategies targeting these diseases. We have been creating an array of mouse disease models to study the involvement of important genetic pathways in disease pathogenesis. We use a multi-disciplinary approach, including cutting edge genome technologies, to study the mechanisms leading from defined genetic changes to disease initiation and progression. One key area of our research has been on the regulatory circuitry and pathogenic mechanisms in urogenital development and diseases, including malignant diseases. We have revealed key genetic determinants and molecular pathogenesis of congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract. We have focused particularly on analyzing the function of the Calcineurin-NFAT signaling pathway. We have revealed key roles of this pathway in urogenital development, in glomerulosclerosis, in osmotic stress responses, and in tumorigenesis. Working with our collaborators, we are keen on applying the latest technologies and developing novel tools, including those in computational biology, genome biology, molecular biology, cell biology, biochemistry, genetics, and transgenic models, to address previously unattainable questions regarding fundamental biological processes and those with important clinical impacts. We are an integral part of the effort to gain insights from big data to guide functional studies and to advance personalized medicine.